Sealants are a thin layer of plastic that coats the teeth's chewing surface, which helps protect against dental decay. According to research, more than 75% of tooth decay starts in deep grooves on the molars and premolars. These areas can be tough to clean and often result in cavities. Sealants act as a barrier for these problem spots by filling them in and creating a smooth exterior that's easy to brush.
Though they don't last forever, sealants can safeguard your teeth for many years before needing replacement – just make sure you get them checked at regular dental appointments!
REASONS FOR SEALANTS:
Children and teenagers – The best time to start using fluoride toothpaste is when the six-year molars appear, or any time during the cavity-prone years of 6-16.
Adults – Surfaces of teeth without decay that have deep grooves or indentations.
Baby teeth – This is only done if a child has deep grooves in their teeth that make them more likely to get cavities.
WHAT DO SEALANTS INVOLVE?
Dr. Jefferson or a hygiene team member can apply sealants in just a few minutes per tooth.
First, the teeth to be sealed are cleaned. Next, cotton is placed around them to keep the area dry. A bonding agent is then applied to help the sealant adhere to the tooth enamel. Finally, the sealant material is painted onto any deep grooves or depressions in the teeth. Depending on which type of sealant is used, it will either harden on its own or with a curing light.
Your sealants will last longer if you take care of them at home, eat a balanced diet, and see Dr. Jefferson for some tooth love regularly.