Dental sealants are a preventative measure to prevent infection or cavities on the surface of the teeth. Dental sealants are thin layers or coating applied in the grooves of the teeth to fill them and create a smooth surface that is easy to clean and maintain good oral hygiene. Dental sealants are applied as a preventive measure over the biting surfaces of teeth to minimize the chances of teeth cavities, tooth decay and other problems in the teeth. These are especially important for young children since they are susceptible to tooth cavities. This is also recommended for adults as a preventative measure.
What is dental sealants procedure?
Procedure to put Dental sealants is a fairly straightforward and simple. First, your dentist or dental hygienist will clean and polish the tooth to remove plaque and food debris, followed by the isolation and drying of the tooth. Afterwards, your dentist will then etch the tooth surface with a mild acid to create small pores on the tooth surface, which helps the sealant bond to the teeth.
Finally, a thin layer of the sealant will be applied on the etched tooth surface without impacting the bite of the teeth and hardened by using a special LED light. That’s it! The procedure is complete.
Why do I need dental sealants?
The biting surfaces of our back teeth contain various grooves and ridges, which are the perfect spots for food impaction and breeding of harmful bacteria. These grooves and ridges are sometimes hard to clean, even with meticulous brushing and flossing.
In these cases, dental sealants are applied to the biting surfaces of the teeth in the form of a thin coat, which prevents foods impaction as well as bacterial colonization, thereby effectively preventing teeth cavities.
Do dental sealants wear off?
Dental sealants bond remarkably well to your teeth. However, with the passage of time, they gradually start to wear off from the surface of the tooth. As a result, they require replacement after a few years. Once the sealants completely wear off, your dentist will apply a fresh coating to protect your teeth from the development of cavities.
However, with proper care, dental sealants can last for up to ten years, or even longer. The life of dental sealants gets considerably reduced in case of poor oral hygiene maintenance, or when a patient has a habit of excessive teeth grinding. The clinical service life of dental sealants depends on various factors such as your diet, oral hygiene routine, and the presence of parafunctional dental habits like teeth clenching and grinding.
Are dental sealants safe?
Yes, dental sealants have proven to be safe and effective. Although, some brands of dental sealants may contain minute quantities of BPA, which is an estrogenic compound. As per research conducted by the American Dental Association (ADA), the amount of BPA present in commercially available dental sealants is well below the limit to cause any adverse effects. Therefore, they can safely be applied for the prevention of teeth cavities.
Are dental sealants the same as dental fillings?
Unlike dental fillings, which are applied by dentists to restore damaged or decayed teeth, dental sealants are applied as a preventive measure over the biting surfaces of teeth to minimize the chances of teeth cavities. Therefore, dental fillings are therapeutic in nature, which dental sealants are preventive.
How does treatment work:
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Dental sealants are completely safe and prevent permanent bone loss in your teeth. Dental sealants help you get a beautiful smile.
frequently asked question
The application of dental sealants on your child’s teeth is an excellent option for preventing tooth cavities. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), “school-age children without sealants have almost three times more cavities than children with sealants.”
Once your dentist or hygienist has applied the sealants on your teeth, then you can eat and drink normally. This is because the sealants have now become bonded to your teeth, and they won’t be affected by your daily life activities like eating, drinking, or brushing.
The application of dental sealants is a simple and straightforward procedure, which usually takes about 30 minutes to complete. However, the exact time required depends on the number of teeth which need the sealants.
Yes, dental sealants have been proven to be effective against tooth cavities. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the application of dental sealants prevents up to 80% of teeth cavities for the first 2 years and up to 50% protection against teeth cavities for up to 4 years.
Dental sealants are applied for preventing tooth cavities. In the case of teeth that are restored with dental fillings, dental sealants cannot be placed as the fillings serve the same purpose.
Dental sealants can be removed if your dentist feels that they have become damaged and they need removal.