What You Need to Know About Dental Sealants

What You Need to Know About Dental Sealants

What are they?

Your teeth, especially the molars and premolars have tiny pits and grooves on the chewing surface. This creates a rough and even surface that the toothbrush bristles may fail to reach, leading to a build-up of food particles and germs over time. The purpose of dental sealants is to fill in this pits and grooves and create an even surface that keeps food particles and germs out. The sealant in itself is a thin film of plastic coating that is applied on a tooth’s surface to form a shield of protection over the enamel.

Who needs dental sealants?

The main goal of a tooth sealant is to protect the tooth against cavities and gum disease by preventing build-up of plaque. Our dentist in Sugar Land TX recommended sealants for anyone with grooves on their teeth and wish to take extra caution to prevent tooth decay. Children between the ages of 6 to 14 tend to be more prone to cavity, and therefore it is wise if you consider getting dental sealant for your kids as soon as the premolars and molars set in. In some cases, sealants may also be necessary for primary teeth. When a child’s milk teeth have significant depressions, it is important to protect them so that they are not lost before time. Losing milk teeth early can affect a child’s dental arrangement when it is time for the permanent teeth to grow.

Procedure and Recovery

If you are interested in getting dental sealants treatment in Sugar Land, Texas, you will be happy to learn that the process at our clinic is fast and painless. After a thorough examination to determine you are a good candidate for tooth sealant, the tooth to be sealed is carefully cleaned and then dried. A piece of cotton wool is left around the tooth to keep it dry while an acid solution to roughen the surface of the tooth is prepared. after the acid is put on the tooth, it dried and rinsed again before the sealant is applied. Immediately the sealant is applied onto a tooth, it dries and bonds directly onto the tooth’s surface. In some situations, depending on the type of sealant used, a curing light is needed to help the sealant harden properly.

After getting a dental sealant treatment, you can go about your everyday activities without any problem. You’ll be able to eat, drink and even talk like normal. The only slight difference you may notice is that when you bite it will feel like you are biting into something but the feeling will fade within a few days.

Benefits and Risks

Besides reducing risk of molar cavities by up to 80%, dentals sealants provide other benefits. These include:

  • Simple, quick and painless placement procedure
  • They are durable; lasting up to 10 years.
  • They blend with the appearance of the tooth.
  • Offer good protection for young kids that don’t know how to clean their teeth properly.
  • Just like any other procedure, sealants have risks too. These include:

  • Some sealant materials contain BPA which is harmful.
  • If a cavity is covered by the sealant it could go unnoticed and get out of hand.
  • Patients may have allergic reactions to the materials used in the sealants

Care and Maintenance

Sealants may protect your enamel against cavities but your gums are still at risk of gum disease. We therefore recommend that you continue to brush, floss and rinse daily in order to prevent build-up of bacteria. You should also keep up with the routine dentist visits. The dentist will make sure that the sealants are in good state and any risks to your dental health are spotted in good time.

Durability

The longevity of sealants will depend on how you care for them. We approximate them to last about for up to 10 years. But in case of premature damage they need to be replaced as soon as possible. Dental sealants for adults tend to be more durable, with most adults requiring just one or two replacements in their lifetime.