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  • Writer's pictureGaby

Sealants: What Are They & Is It A Complicated Procedure

Dental sealants are a preventive dental treatment designed to protect the chewing surfaces of molars and premolars from tooth decay. These surfaces often have pits and fissures that can trap food particles and bacteria, making them more susceptible to cavities and impossable to keep clean with regular brushing. Sealants are typically applied to the back teeth, where these grooves are most prominent.

Here's how the process of applying dental sealants usually works:

  1. Cleaning the Teeth: The dentist starts by cleaning the teeth that will receive the sealants. This involves removing any plaque or debris from the tooth surfaces.

  2. Etching: The dentist may then apply an acidic solution (usually phosphoric acid) to the chewing surfaces of the teeth. This etching process roughens the enamel and kills any lingering bacteria while at the same time creating a better surface for the sealant to bond to.

  3. Rinsing and Drying: After the etching solution is applied and has had sufficient time to work, the teeth are rinsed and dried thoroughly.

  4. Applying the Sealant: The dentist then applies the dental sealant onto the grooves and pits of the tooth or molar. The sealant is typically a liquid resin that quickly hardens into a thin, protective coating.

  5. Curing the Sealant: To harden and set the sealant, the dentist may use a special light, usually a curing light. This process ensures that the sealant bonds securely to the tooth surface.

Once the sealant is applied and cured, it forms a hard protective barrier that helps prevent food particles, bacteria, and acids from reaching the enamel and causing decay. Dental sealants are commonly used in pediatric dentistry to protect children's permanent molars and premolars. However, adults can also benefit from sealants, especially if they have deep grooves and are prone to decay. Its important to understand that Sealants can not be placed on teeth that have cavities . The tooth must be free of decays to qualify for a sealant. If you want to get ahead of the game discuss this with your childs Dental Healthcare provider and keep an eye on your child six year molar which are the first permanent molars to make an appearance at around your childs six year of life, (everyone is different sometimes its sooner sometimes its a little later).

Sealants are a simple and painless preventive measure that can significantly reduce the risk of cavities, and they are often recommended by dentists as part of a comprehensive oral health care plan. Regular dental check-ups are essential to monitor the condition of the sealants and ensure their effectiveness over time. This simple preventative measure will save you a lot of money, stress, and headaches over time.

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