Dental sealants are thin coatings that are painted on the surface of your back teeth. The process is fairly simple: sealants are applied as a liquid then harden rapidly to form a cover over the tooth. Prior to application, the tooth is thoroughly cleaned to make sure that no bacteria is on the surface. Cotton is placed around the tooth to absorb any moisture. The solution is placed on the tooth to make it slightly rough and easy for the sealant to stick. Finally, the sealant is painted on and hardens in just a few seconds.
Prevent Tooth Decay with Preventative Dentistry
The primary reason to get sealants is to prevent any tooth decay. Fluoride that can be found in water or toothpaste helps to prevent the surface of your teeth, but molars need a little more protection. The chewing surfaces of your molars are rough since they have small pits and grooves. This rough surface makes it easy for food and germs to get stuck. Dental sealants cover these surfaces of your molars, preventing food and bacteria from getting suck. Even if you brush thoroughly, it’s difficult to get all of the food particles removed. Sealants help to protect your teeth 24/7 while helping to prevent future dental procedures such as fillings, crowns, and caps needed to fix decayed teeth.
Who Should Get Sealants?
The best time to begin preventative dentistry is usually when a child is 6 years old and 12 years old. Around these ages, children are developing their first and second permanent molars. Depending on the structure of the patient’s teeth, our dentists may recommend sealants for other teeth as well. Teenagers and young adults who are prone to tooth decay may also benefit from sealants – which can be discussed during a regular check-up.
How Long Do Sealants Last?
In most cases, sealants last around 10 years. You should have them regularly checked by your dentist to make sure they do not chip or wear away. Your dentist can repair any sealants by applying more material quickly and easily. If a cavity is accidentally covered with a sealant, the bacteria will not spread since it is safely sealed off from any food or germs. If this happens, the dentist will fix the cavity and then replace the sealant.
Our team at Premier Dental is dedicated to improving the oral health of our patients. Contact us today to schedule an appointment!