Careful and gentle brushing and flossing are necessary to keep your teeth clean and protect them against any issues related to teeth and gums. But, an oral hygiene regimen, no matter how good it is, cannot clean every nook and cranny of your tooth. More specifically, teeth in the back of your mouth are more vulnerable to bacteria because it is generally hard for the brush and flossing threat to reach those areas. The pits and fissures on those teeth allow bacteria to settle in, resulting in tooth decay and other dental problems.
Another way to keep those back teeth clean is to apply sealant. It is a thin, protective coating that adheres to the chewing surface of your teeth. Remember, there is an alternative to brushing and flossing, but the sealant may prevent cavities from developing, and may even halt a progressing decay.
According to a survey, dental sealants have helped reduce the risk of tooth decay by 80% in molars. A report released by the Centers for Disease Control in 2016 suggests that school-aged children without dental sealants are three times more likely to develop cavities compared to the children who have dental sealants.
How do dental sealants work?
You may think of dental sealants as raincoats for your teeth. A human mouth is full of bacteria. When these bacteria meet with the leftover food particles, they start producing acids that can develop holes in the teeth. These holes are called cavities. After the application of the sealant, the tooth remains protected from acids that cause cavities.
Who can get sealants?
Although it is never too late for an adult to get sealants, children are the right individuals who should get their teeth protected this way. The first molars start appearing at the age of six, while the second molars erupt at the age of twelve. Sealing these teeth as soon as they erupt can save them from decay and other complications in the future. You may need to ask your dentist if you are the right candidate for dental sealants.
Application of dental sealants
The process of the application of sealants is quick and painless. Your dentist will clean and dry your tooth and will place an acidic gel on the surface that has to be covered with the sealant. The gel roughens the surface to allow it to get hold of the sealant. The dentist will rinse your tooth to clear the gel and dry it up before applying the seal. He will then use a small brush to apply the sealant and will use a special blue light to harden the sealant.
Can you get a sealant on the decayed area?
Yes, you can place the sealant on the decayed area to prevent further decay. You should go for the evaluation at the dental clinic if you want the sealant to cover the decayed area of your teeth.