Dental Sealants are a great way to prevent your teeth from ever getting a cavity. The most common areas of the teeth that get cavities are the deep grooves in the back molars. Placing a sealant into those deeper grooves can stop that from occurring.
Dr David Daniel & Associates believe in encouraging “preventive care”. They believe the best dentistry is having to do no treatment to a tooth! Sealants are painless, simple procedures that protect your teeth.
Here’s a video about sealants:
What are Dental Sealants?
They are clear thin plastic resin composite coating that is placed into the pits and fissures in the tops of the back teeth. This will prevent bacteria and food from getting trapped there and breakdown into acids that cause tooth breakdown and decay. Typically, they are placed on the permanent back molars shortly after they erupt around between ages 6-12 years old. They can also be applied to the bicuspids and even on the back of some of the upper front teeth. Any tooth with a groove in it is a candidate.
How long do sealants last?
A typical sealant will last about 6-10 years. If the patient has a diet that contains more grains or harder materials or they grind their teeth, it could wear down sooner. The good news is that they can be easily reapplied.
How are sealants applied?
The good news is that you don’t need any drilling or shots to have sealants placed. In some cases, a dental professional may clean out the grooves with both a small brush and pumice to roughen the surface to make it more accepting of the bonded sealant. In rare cases, a thin bur might be used to clean out the grooves or even an air abrasion unit to clear the bacteria so you don’t seal bacteria into the tooth grooves.
How will I know if the sealant is on my tooth?
While most sealants are clear, sometimes, they will put either a white or pink coloration in with the sealant so it’s easier to see where it is on the tooth and help differentiate it from tooth or plaque. The lightly-tinted material is barely visible in most cases. See photos below:
Is it worth it getting sealants on my teeth or my children’s teeth?
The American Dental Association recognizes this procedure as a safe and effective way to prevent cavities – also called caries – in the deeper pits and fissures commonly found on the chewing surfaces of the back molar, especially in young children. It is also very effective for adults who have physical disabilities that make proper brushing a challenge for them. Avoiding a cavity in the first place is better than waiting for it to occur.
Shouldn’t I just get sealants on all my teeth then and not worry about cavities or fluoride treatment?
No, the reason fluoride is still useful, is that sealants are only able to be places or easy to access surfaces and in particularly the grooves on top of the teeth. Fluoride, whether it is delivered in a gel, a rinse a toothpaste, a pill, or through your community drinking water helps to get to those surfaces near the gumline, in between the teeth or around orthodontic braces and under bridges. In other words, areas that we couldn’t seal out plaque from accumulating.
Contact our office today to see if you would be a good candidate for Dental Sealants!