WHAT ARE SEALANTS?

A sealant is thin plastic resin film mainly applied to the chewing surface of posterior teeth, molars and premolars, and any deep grooves of teeth. The anatomy of molar and premolar teeth consists of several pits and fissures where debris tends to accumulate and that are difficult to maintain clean. It is this rough natural anatomy that makes them more susceptible to tooth decay. In fact, around 75% of dental cavities begin in these deep areas. Sealants are applied to teeth and flow into and fill any pits and fissures, creating a smooth, easy to clean surface.

Dental sealants are primarily used in children that are at a higher risk of developing cavities, and are placed as soon as adult molars come through or at any time throughout the cavity prone years of six to sixteen years of age. They are also applied on adult teeth that are cavity free but that have deep grooves or depressions. Feel free to ask your dentist in Lake Worth at Prestige Dental Care if sealants are right for your child or yourself.

HOW ARE SEALANTS APPLIED?

The first step when applying sealants is to apply a cleaning agent on the tooth surface that will be sealed (typically the chewing surface of the tooth). This agent is later rinsed out with water. Once the tooth surface is cleaned, the tooth is isolated to keep it dry and an etching solution is carefully applied on the tooth surface and it is allowed to sit for fifteen seconds. Water is then used to thoroughly rinse away the etching solution leaving behind a thoroughly clean and slightly rough area for the sealing material to stick to.

Next, your caring Lake Worth dentist will carefully paint the sealant material on the tooth surface and it is hardened using a special curing light. At then end, your bite is checked for any high contact areas, which would need to be adjusted as needed. One of the advantages of placing sealants is that you won’t need to be anesthetized and no drill is needed given that it is a painless process. Sealant placement is a quick process that typically lasts anywhere from ten to thirty minutes depending on the number of tooth surfaces that need to be sealed.

HOW EFFECTIVE ARE DENTAL SEALANTS?

It has been proven by several scientific studies that when sealants are properly applied, they have 100% effectiveness in protecting teeth surfaces from developing cavities. Due to the fact that sealants act as a physical barrier to cavities, a proper technique when applying it is vital; it’s protection against decay merely depends on its ability to adhere to the tooth.

As long as sealants maintain their integrity, bacteria and other agents that lead to cavities would not be able to penetrate that section of the tooth and weaken it. In fact, it has been shown by scientific studies that sealants, when applied correctly on a chewing tooth surface that has a small cavity starting, can actually stop the cavity from growing. Sealants do this by cutting off any nutrient supply to the bacteria that causes cavities. Ask your dentist in Lake Worth at Prestige Dental Care how sealants can help your teeth stay healthy.

The protection provided by sealants is lost or reduced when the bond between the sealant and the tooth surface is broken. Therefore, it is important to come to our office every six months in order for your caring Lake Worth dentist to check your sealants in order to make sure that they are still properly protecting your teeth.

HOW LONG DO SEALANTS LAST?

Sealants can last many years, up to ten years if there isn’t too much wear and tear. Due to this, sealants should not be considered permanent. Sealant protection is lost when part or all of the bond between the tooth and sealant is broken; therefore, it is important to have regular check ups at our Lake Worth dental office in order to make sure that they are not chipped or worn away. Proper home care, balanced diet and regular visits to our dental office will aid in the life of your new sealants.

WHO IS THE RIGHT CANDIDATE FOR SEALANTS?

Children and teenagers that have newly erupted adult molars and premolars are the best candidates. Bacteria can easily accumulate in the depressions and grooves of these teeth making them more susceptible to tooth decay; therefore, sealants will benefit them the most. However, they can be of service to you no matter your age. Their main purpose is to protect teeth and as such, will help your teeth at any stage in your life.

If you are considering sealants to protect your teeth or your child’s teeth with a caring dentist near you, call us today at (561) 965-3933 or click below for a consultation.

If you are considering sealants with a caring dentist near you, call us today at (561) 965-3933 or click below for a consultation