Glass Ionomer Studies
Studies comparing glass ionomer with other sealants indicate similar benefits. Dr. Antonson refers to experiments that found glass ionomer penetrated deep pits and fissures better than other sealants, and even when the sealant was apparently missing decay, did not develop. This may be because sealant still existed in the deepest areas of the tooth.
Dr. Lindemeyer describes a study looking at the effects of glass ionomer on adjacent teeth that were not sealed. Compared to a conventional sealant that released fluoride, a resin-modified glass ionomer sealant appeared to offer better protection against decay in these adjacent teeth. Researchers speculated the glass ionomer acted like a fluoride reservoir, equivalent to brushing twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
Depending on the needs of the patient, glass ionomer sealant may be the right choice for your child. Sealing the teeth is not the end-all answer to preventing tooth decay, but dental sealants can help during the years when children find it difficult to reach their emerging teeth to brush them properly. Even so, children who have had their teeth sealed should continue to brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, such as Colgate® Kids 2 in 1 Watermelon Toothpaste, and to visit with their dentist regularly.