Brushing and flossing can aid in the prevention of tooth decay, but it is not always easy to reach every nook and cranny with bristles and floss alone. To fill gaps that you may otherwise miss, your Melbourne, FL dentist may recommend dental sealants.
Oral sealants are a type of resilient coating placed on the grooves of the back teeth to protect against decay.
Sealants are often recommended for children, starting around age six when the first adult molars start to emerge. The chewing surfaces of the back teeth are the most likely location for a cavity to develop as they contain pits and fissures that trap food particles and bacteria.
The newly erupted teeth in a child’s mouth are not as resistant to tooth decay as adult teeth are, making dental sealants an effective preventative treatment. Learn more about this quick procedure and whether they are right for you or your child.
What Exactly are They?
Dental sealants are a type of transparent plastic resin coating that is designed to smooth the chewing surfaces of the back teeth. Sealed teeth are naturally more resistant to decay as food and other debris are unable to settle in the deep grooves of the teeth.
Placing dental sealants is a quick and painless procedure that can be performed by your Melbourne Florida dentist in just a few minutes. Many dentists recommend that children have them placed at the end of their regular dental teeth cleaning or exam.
The process begins with a thorough examination of the teeth to be sealed to ensure that no decay is present. The teeth are then cleaned and dried to create a clean surface for the sealants to bond. Your dentist will then apply a solution that helps to slightly roughen up or “etch” the tooth surface. This solution helps make the sealant material better adhere to the tooth.
Finally, the sealant material is painted onto the teeth in a liquid form. Many types of sealants harden on their own in just a minute’s time. However, some types of sealants require a special curing light to harden. Once applied, these sealants can last upwards of 10 years or more.
Are Oral Sealants Safe?
There has been much controversy over the decades regarding dental sealants and their safety. One of the biggest worries pertaining to sealants relates to BPA, a synthetic compound commonly found in plastic products. In large amounts, BPA can be harmful to a person’s health. However, dental sealants only contain trace amounts of BPA and are therefore safe for use by children and adults alike.
What are the Advantages of Sealants?
Dental sealants offer countless benefits when applied by a professional and maintained at home. Sealants can help fight tooth decay and improve a person’s overall oral hygiene. They are also safe to use and are generally cheaper than dental fillings. The procedure takes just a few moments to complete and is completely painless. However, dental sealants are not right for everyone.
Who Is a Good Candidate for Sealants?
You may be wondering if you or your child may be a good candidate for dental sealants. Sealants are generally recommended for younger patients, including children, teens, and young adults who have some or all of their permanent teeth. Sealants can help kids who are not yet efficient at brushing prevent the formation of decay and gum disease.
Adults who do not have fillings or decay on their back teeth may also be good candidates for dental sealants. If an adult has deep grooves or pits in their back teeth, sealants may help fill in these gaps to prevent bacteria from wreaking havoc. It is best to consult with your dentist to determine if you are a good candidate for sealants.
Schedule an Oral Health Hygiene Appointment With Your Melbourne Dentist Today
Tooth decay is a widespread problem that affects children and adults of all ages. Today, there are many ways to protect against cavities and keep the teeth strong and healthy, such as dental sealants. To find out if dental sealants are right for you or to schedule an appointment with our experienced dentist, contact Artistic Touch Dentistry today.