Regular brushing, flossing, and dental check-ups are some of the ways of keeping tooth cavities, tooth decays and other dental related problems away. However, even with the most diligent dental practices, tooth decay and periodontal diseases are bound to occur at some point in time. This is largely attributed to the complex anatomy of the mouth, which makes it difficult to access to the back teeth. Specifically, the molars. As technology advances in dentistry, new treatments and preventive measures have been discovered to prevent tooth decay. One of the effective techniques of fighting tooth decay is the use of dental sealants.
Dental sealants are thin, plastic resins applied onto the outer surface of the teeth, and act as a protective shield. The sealant is bonded to the pits, grooves, and fissures of the tooth. The sealant covers the grooves and pits in your teeth, which prevents food particles and disease-causing bacteria from getting lodged into the teeth. It also acts as an effective barrier towards tooth decay. Additionally, sealants streamline the architecture of the teeth; making the tooth surface smoother and this will facilitate easy access of the toothbrush bristles to all parts of the mouth while removing plaque that is responsible for tooth decay.
Sealants are most effective when applied as soon as the molars and premolars erupt – around the age of 12. Even though children and teenagers are the ideal candidates for the procedure, adults too can benefit from dental sealants to prevent tooth decay and future complications. When properly applied, sealants can last from six to twelve years but should be regularly checked to ensure there’s no cracking.
Since sealants are often available in white or clear, they mimic the appearance of teeth and are virtually invisible when you smile. Most importantly, they are easily applied without the need for drilling or removal of teeth, thus not affect the oral health.