Even with good oral hygiene practices, both adults and children may still be at risk of developing tooth decay. Regular brushing and flossing of the teeth only help clean the front surfaces of the teeth. But reaching out to the back molars and premolars is challenging for everyone. The grooves on the teeth's chewing surfaces could trap food and provide a perfect breeding ground for bacteria. This often results in the formation of cavities in young, vulnerable teeth.
At Stonegate Family Dentistry, we specialize in providing dental sealants to help protect your teeth from tooth decay and cavity formation.
What Are Dental Sealants?
A dental sealant is a thin coating, generally made of resin or polymer. They are applied to the chewing surfaces of your molars and premolars to ensure additional dental protection. The deep fissures and pits on these surfaces do not get cleaned properly since the toothbrush's bristles may not be able to reach the food and plaque stuck within these deep grooves. These leftover food particles can cause the accumulation of bacteria and acids in your mouth leading to the erosion of the tooth's enamel and the formation of cavities.
What Are the Benefits of Dental Sealants?
Dental sealants prevent cavities and tooth decay by filling up the deep grooves and pits to help ease brushing. Consequently, these sealants should be checked periodically to ensure that they are still correctly intact and doing their job. If required, we can reapply a sealant for your dental protection and reduce the chances of needing any further restorative procedure should cavities or other oral issues arise.
What Is the Procedure for Dental Sealants?
The application of a dental sealant involves a painless and straightforward procedure, and it requires only a few minutes per tooth. The first step is to meticulously clean the tooth and ensure that there is no decay that may need a filling. Once the tooth has been cleaned, the tooth is smeared with a mild acid solution to help the sealant bond well with the tooth. The sealant is then applied to the tooth's grooves and, depending on the material used, the sealant will either harden naturally or by using a specialized light.
Who Should Get Sealants?
The application of sealants can benefit both children and adults. The first set of molars starts to break out at the age of six, and the next batch comes through at around twelve. The earlier the molars are sealed, the better it is to keep them cavity-free. This is why it's best to get them early before the teeth have had a chance to experience decay.
Our Stonegate Family Dentistry team looks forward to meeting with you and developing a customized plan to meet your individual needs. Call us today at (615) 624-6919 or request an appointment online.