Dental sealants are polymer (plastic) coatings applied to your teeth, typically to the chewing surfaces.
Generally, dentists treat teeth that exhibit pits or fissures with sealants.
The uneven surface of teeth with pits and fissures make them difficult to clean.
Consequently, they are more prone to developing decay.
Dental sealants fill and cover those imperfections.
Consequently, they leave the surface of the tooth smooth and easier to clean.
One application will usually protect teeth for several years, although that can vary.
When to Use Dental Sealants
Sealants protect the teeth of children and teens when the permanent back teeth erupt.
This will provide long-lasting protection, especially during the “cavity-prone” years between the ages of 5 or 6 years to about 15-16 years of age.
Also, sealants are used on younger children if their teeth exhibit pits or fissures.
As mentioned above, sealants also provide protection to adults with teeth that have depressions or grooves that make them harder to clean and cavity prone.
The Sealant Process
Your dentist or hygienist will apply sealants quickly and easily after some minor preparation:
- The teeth are cleaned
- Cotton is placed around the teeth to absorb moisture
- A solution is applied to the teeth that promotes boding of the sealant to the teeth
- Excess solution is rinsed away, the teeth are thoroughly dried
- The sealant is applied, filling the uneven surface areas of the teeth.
After the Process
Dental sealants require no special care or maintenance since you just follow a proper regimen of at-home care to ensure good oral health.
Your dentist will inspect the sealed teeth during routine exams and cleanings.
Sealants are re-applied when signs of wear appear, extending the protection they provide.
Sealants provide one more tool in the fight for oral health.
Additionally, your dentist may suggest them if your teeth have coarse surfaces.
Dentist Brandon MS is your complete oral health care provider because we offer a full range of services.
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