Ask a Family Dentist: What Are Dental Sealants?

dental sealants Baltimore, MD

Dental sealants, also commonly referred to as sealants, are a thin resin coating that dental practitioners paint on the chewing surfaces of teeth. Sealants are often applied to the grooves of the back teeth, the molars and premolars. Family dentists usually recommend sealants to help prevent cavities. Read on to learn more about sealing out tooth decay and how dental sealants can benefit you and your family.

Dental sealants

People are always advised to brush and floss regularly to help prevent cavities. However, it is not always easy to get into all the nooks and crannies of the back teeth to remove plaque and food. Fortunately, sealants can help to keep these teeth clean. Dental sealants can keep cavities from forming and may even stop decay. Sealants usually reduce the risk of decay by a very high percentage in molars.

How sealants work

When the cavity-causing bacteria that live in people’s mouth meet leftover food particles, they end up producing acids that can create holes in the teeth. These holes are basically cavities. After the practitioner applies the sealant, it will help keep these bits of food out. It will also stop bacteria and acids from settling on the patient’s teeth.

Both adults and children can benefit from getting dental sealants. But dentists often suggest getting them early. The first molars usually appear at around age six. The second morals often break through at around age 12. Sealing these teeth right after they come through can ensure that the teeth are kept cavity-free from the start. A person will then eventually save time and money and avoid the discomfort of getting a cavity filled.

How sealants are applied

The process of getting them is usually quick and painless. The dentist will start by cleaning and drying the tooth prior to placing an acidic gel on the teeth. This gel will roughen up the surface of the tooth so that a strong bond can form between the sealant and the tooth. After a couple of seconds, the dentist will rinse off the gel and dry the tooth again. The dentist will then apply the dental sealant onto the grooves of the patient’s tooth. A blue light will be used to harden the sealant.

How long sealants last

Sealants usually last for many years. This means that the teeth will be protected from decay for a long time. But dental sealants need to be checked for any problems at regular dental checkups. The dentist may then determine if the sealants need to be replaced.

Bottom line

There are many reasons why people should opt for sealants. Sealants offer an effective way to prevent cavities and decay. Dental sealants keep plaque, acids and food from sitting in the grooves of the back teeth. Getting them also increases the chances of the patient saving time and money in the long run. Sealants can protect a patient’s teeth from decay for several years before they need to be reapplied. Talk to your family dentist about whether sealants are a good option for you and your family.

Are you considering getting dental sealants in the Baltimore area? Get more information at https://www.perkinsdentalbaltimore.com.

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