A regular oral hygiene regimen that includes brushing and flossing helps prevent decay, but reaching every part of every tooth is challenging. The molars we use to chew contain rough grooves called “pits” and “fissures,” which trap bacteria and food particles. Over time, the untouched debris creates the perfect conditions for tooth decay.
Dental sealants safeguard your teeth from cavity-causing bacteria. At Eureka Dental Group, we offer numerous services to create a beautiful smile, such as dental sealants. Our dental professionals take a preventative approach to dental care, saving you time, money, and discomfort down the road.
You may be a good candidate for sealants if you suffer from repeated tooth decay. Schedule an appointment with our Eureka dentist today.
What Are Sealants for Teeth?
Dental sealants are made from an invisible plastic resin coating placed primarily on molars’ and premolars’ chewing (occlusal) surfaces. As a result, the pits and fissures remain covered and protected from harmful cavity-causing bacteria. The extra protection smooths the teeth’s surface and safeguards against plaque.
How Do Dental Sealants Work?
Places vulnerable to decay can significantly benefit from dental sealants. Since the pits and fissures are difficult to clean and narrower than toothbrush bristles, plaque accumulates. Sealants, then, act as an umbrella. Just as an umbrella keeps the rain from touching you, dental sealants prevent plaque and bacteria from entering teeth.
Dental Sealant Application
Tooth enamel doesn’t contain nerves, so patients receiving dental sealants won’t feel pain during the application. Dentists applying sealants typically follow a series of steps:
- Dental professionals clean the tooth surface with a rotating brush and fluoride toothpaste.
- They then rinse and dry the tooth.
- If the dental professional finds minimal decay, they will gently remove it before proceeding.
- The dentist places an acidic solution for several seconds to roughen the tooth’s chewing surface, then rinses and dries the area.
- Dentists apply the sealants in liquid form, hardening them after about a minute with a curing light.
- They repeat the process for other teeth needing sealants.
After the procedure, you can chew and eat as usual. Sealants typically last for years with proper oral hygiene. During regular visits, your dentist will check its condition and reapply if necessary.
Who Benefits from Sealants?
Although patients of all ages can benefit from sealants, children remain the best candidates. The earlier patients can receive sealants, the better, as protecting newly erupted molars from the start will save time, money, and discomfort in the future. Plus, a child’s newly erupted permanent teeth aren’t yet as resistant to decay as adult teeth, making them more susceptible to decay.
Adults prone to decay in deep pits and fissures can receive sealants, although it’s less common. Sealants provide the utmost protection to children and teenagers once their molars first erupt.
Protect Your Teeth from Decay With Sealants
Sealants are one of the most effective methods of preventing decay on the surfaces where they are placed. Although it is still possible that decay may happen on surfaces between the teeth, sealants significantly reduce the overall chance of cavities. If you or your children have a greater risk of tooth decay, don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment with our Eureka dentist today.
Our team of professionals provides the utmost care to patients of all ages. You can trust our dental specialists if you need cosmetic dentistry, emergency care, cleanings, or another dental service. Contact us today to safeguard your teeth!