A dental sealant refers to a thin plastic coating that is painted on your teeth’s chewing surfaces (molars and premolars). Dental sealants prevent you from getting tooth decay. A tooth sealant bonds into the grooves and depressions of your teeth and forms a protective layer over each tooth. Regularly flossing and brushing of teeth gets rid of plaque and food particles on the surface of your teeth. However, these measures are not guaranteed to remove all the particles or plaque in the depths of your back teeth. Sealants are a form of preventative dentistry aimed at protecting the vulnerable parts of your teeth from decay by sealing out food and plaque.
Who is the best Candidate for Tooth Sealants?
Because decay can easily form in the grooves and depressions of the molars and premolars, children, teenagers and adults can go for dental sealants.
Children should go for dental sealants on permanent premolars and molars the moment they erupt. The use of sealants will help protect their teeth during the years, age 6-14, when they are most vulnerable to cavities.
Are Sealants only Placed on Permanent Molars and Premolars?
Sealants are applied on teeth chewing surfaces because these areas consist of deep fissures. However, as part of preventative dentistry, your dentist may use sealants on other teeth that have pits or groves to protect these surfaces from decay.
Application of Sealants
The application of sealants is straightforward and painless. Your cosmetic dentist will only take a couple of minutes in applying a sealant to each tooth. The process of applying sealant is as follows:
- The teeth that are going to be sealed are cleaned thoroughly
- Each tooth will be dried and an absorbent material like cotton used to dry the tooth completely
- A solution containing acid is applied on the teeth’s chewing surfaces to rough them up. Roughing up the tooth surface will help the sealant to bond to the tooth.
- The dentist rinses and dries the teeth.
- Sealant is applied on the enamel of the tooth where it directly bonds and hardens your tooth.
How Long Can You Have Sealants?
Sealants are able to protect your teeth for 10 years but they should be checked regularly for wearing or chipping.
Oral health cannot only be maintained by regular flossing and brushing. Sometimes, all it takes is to visit a cosmetic dentist to determine if there any hidden dental conditions and whether you require any form of preventative dentistry. For more information about the condition of your teeth, call your local cosmetic dentist and book an appointment for a thorough dental checkup.