Many family dentists recommend sealants as an additional protection against cavities and decay. Along with vigilant dental hygiene, a properly applied sealant can protect your teeth from 100% of cavity-causing bacteria. Bacteria works its way into your teeth’s natural grooves and depressions. While brushing and flossing help to discharge the food and plaque that sticks to your teeth, sealants provide your teeth with a much stronger defense.
Any patient whose permanent teeth have emerged are candidates for sealants. While children are the most obvious candidates, other patients who are susceptible to cavities would benefit from the application of sealants.
The procedure for placing sealants is one of the easiest dental treatments for patients and can usually be completed during a regular cleaning appointment. Once the teeth have been thoroughly cleaned, an acidic etching solution is used to prepare the surface of the teeth to bond with the sealant. Next, your family dentist will “paint” the surface of your teeth with a composite resin sealant. Easy to apply, sealants take only a few minutes to coat each tooth. A special light is used to harden the sealant. Once the sealant is dry, the tooth is immediately ready for normal use. Sealants hold up beautifully under the force of normal chewing and biting.
While sealants are considered permanent restorations, they normally last about five years before a reapplication is needed. Your family dentist can repair or replace sealants as necessary. Consult with your family dentist to find out more about how dental sealants can help to protect your family’s beautiful smiles.