Why are Sealants important?
According to a report by the Surgeon General, sealants can help prevent dental decay by up to 70%. Orchard Dental is happy to discuss with our patients, ways we can prevent ever getting cavities in the first place. This allows your dental work to be even more pain-free and financially easier on the wallet. We want our patients mouth’s happy and healthy to keep up with your great smile.
Sealants are a fantastic way to prevent and protect your teeth from future decay. They act as a barrier to food, plaque, and acid, thus protecting the decay-prone areas of the teeth. As shown in the picture to the right, some grooves in teeth are so incredibly steep, even a fine toothbrush bristle is unable to reach the bottom of the groove. This allows bacteria to remain on your tooth which can lead to a cavity.
Sealants can be vitally important to keep this from happening to you and your teeth. A thin resin sealant can be placed over these grooves by the dentist or qualified assistant. This will fill in these deep grooves, protecting the tooth from bacteria in these more vulnerable areas. It will also round out the deep grooves, allowing you to take better care of the tooth when brushing in the future.
Orchard Dental offers a warranty with the sealants we do. If the sealants are done in our office, we will warranty them for the next 3 years. To learn more about this warranty, please click here.
At what age should I have sealants placed?
Any age is a great age! There’s the common misconception that sealants are only for children. Sure, children with new teeth erupting into the mouth can be at a higher risk to get cavities, but adults aren’t immune to tooth decay either. Anytime staining in the grooves of the teeth are visible, sealants may be recommended. Sealants help to maintain good oral hygiene and allow you to keep your teeth clean, removing the bacteria that shouldn’t be there.
What is the procedure for having a sealant placed?
It’s very simple. In fact, it’s probably one of the most simple procedures a dentist can do. There’s no need to numb the tooth or surrounding tissues. To start, the dentist or qualified assistant will place some etch on the tooth. Etch is a blue runny liquid that will sit in the grooves and microscopically create surface area so when the sealant is placed, it will adhere better to the tooth. Once that is rinsed off, the dentist will dispense the sealant onto the tooth. It is white and may even be a little brighter than the tooth itself. After the sealant is placed, the assistant will turn on a blue light in the mouth, which solidifies the sealant, holding it in the proper place. And that’s it! There’s no pain involved and it’s usually done in a matter of minutes. At Orchard Dental, we can even take care of these when you come in for your cleaning and checkup.
Ask the dentist or any other dental team member about sealants at your next appointment. We’d be happy to answer any questions you might have about this great preventative procedure.