There are many ways to help prevent and treat tooth decay among children and adolescents. In addition to promoting toothbrushing with fluoride toothpaste, oral health professionals can apply fluoride varnish, silver diamine fluoride, and dental sealants.
Dental sealants are effective in preventing tooth decay in the pits and fissures of primary and permanent teeth and are underused. School-based dental sealant programs offer an effective approach for reaching these children and have been implemented successfully around the country.
Seal America: The Prevention Invention is designed to assist health professionals in launching and sustaining school-based dental sealant programs. In addition to offering a step-wise approach for planning and implementing school-based dental sealant programs, this manual addresses issues related to referring students with unmet oral health needs to a dental clinic or office. Health professionals working in established school-based dental sealant programs may also find the manual of interest as they work to improve specific aspects of their program.
It is hoped that, with the help of this manual, others will launch similar programs to help children and adolescents from vulnerable populations enjoy the best possible oral health and quality of life.
After using the manual, please take a moment to fill out the feedback form. The manual is intended to be a living document and your input will continue to improve its applicability and timeliness.
This edition was developed by Nancy L. Carter and Elizabeth A. Lowe with assistance from the American Association for Community Dental Programs and the National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center. See Acknowledgements for a list of contributors and reviewers. This manual is hosted by the National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center. Please submit comments and suggestions via the feedback form.
Access the steps using the left navigation or use the Steps Menu, which provides a visual overview of each step.
©2016 National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center, Georgetown University