What are Preventive Sealants?
Preventive sealants, also called dental sealants, protect the chewing surfaces of back teeth. These teeth, molars, and premolars, tend to suffer more tooth decay because of their position. These teeth also feature deep nooks and crannies difficult to clean during regular oral hygiene. Therefore, your dentist applies plastic sealant coating to your back teeth to help prevent plaque bacteria and acids from causing cavities.
With your dentist’s care and good home oral hygiene, preventive sealants give you an advantage against tooth decay. Of course, even with sealants you must brush your teeth twice daily and floss regularly. By doing so, you avoid plaque build-up and maintain a naturally attractive smile.
Do You Need Preventive Sealants?
The grooves in your back teeth, called fissures, trap plaque bacteria and acids. This makes your chewing teeth vulnerable to tooth decay. Your toothbrush cannot even reach as far into these deep fissures as needed for thorough teeth cleanings. In fact, some of the nooks are too tiny to fit even one toothbrush bristle.
This is why plaque builds up in these back teeth. The resulting plaque bacteria produce acids that attack your naturally protective tooth coating, enamel. This starts the chain of events leading to cavities and your need for dental restorations, such as fillings, root canal therapy or teeth crowns.
Young people gain the most benefit from preventive sealants. Your Dentistry By Design dentist, Dr. Brad Tiner, usually applies this plastic coating onto the fissure of the first permanent back teeth, once each tooth’s crown emerges from the gums. Using sealant protects these new molars and premolars until all have grown into place. Then, adolescents and even adults benefit from later reapplication of dental sealants for continued protection.
How Your Dentist Applies Dental Sealants
When your dentist applies sealants, the procedure causes no pain. There is no drilling required, so you do not need any numbing treatment or medications. The process of applying sealants involves three simple steps. These include tooth preparation, sealant application and evaluation of the results.
To prepare your tooth, the dental hygienist provides a professional cleaning. Polishing your tooth surface removes debris and plaque from the fissure and pits where the sealants will provide protection. Then the hygienist dries your tooth and etches its surface.
The dentist or dental hygienist next applies the sealant coating onto your tooth’s surface. For this, they use a brush and a special light that cures the plastic to harden and bond it to your tooth surface.
Once they complete the above steps, your dental hygienist and dentist check the sealant and your bite. By the time you leave the dentist’s office, you can chew as you normally do. You also brush and floss your teeth without any changes to your home oral hygiene routine.
Dental Sealants in Richardson, Texas
Dentistry By Design’s caring dental team works hard to ensure your teeth stay healthy and strong. This treatment is a partnership between you, the dentist and dental hygienists at Dentistry By Design. If you need dental sealants to protect your back teeth, Dr. Bradford Tiner recommends this dental service. He also provides a range of other dental services, including:
Call Dentistry By Design today at (972) 299-3663 to learn more about preventive sealants and schedule your first visit. Through quality dental care at Dentistry By Design, you can keep your whole mouth healthy for a lifetime of attractive smiles.