Each of your teeth are unique, with pits and grooves on their surfaces that may deepen with regular use. We all try to keep our teeth clean and healthy, but regular brushing and flossing can often miss plaque or food particles that settle in the rough surfaces on our teeth. Eventually, tartar can form in these vulnerable spots and lead to tooth decay and cavities.
With dental sealants, we can prevent decay by filling pits and grooves and smoothing the surfaces of your teeth. After sealants are applied, your teeth will be easier to keep clean and you’ll reduce your chances of forming cavities.
A dental sealant is a thin, plastic coating that’s applied as a liquid to pits and grooves in the surface of molars — the teeth at the back of the mouth most commonly used for chewing food. The liquid sealant hardens into a tough shell to prevent bacteria from reaching your enamel or settling in grooves on your teeth. Sealants are white or transparent, so they won’t be noticeable after application.
Dental sealants are an efficient way to protect your teeth from future cavities or decay. Preventative care with sealants can avoid the need for more expensive and invasive care in the future.
Because your back teeth experience more wear and have more pits for plaque and food particles to settle in, they are more prone to tooth decay and cavities than other teeth. The simple process of sealing the grooves on your molars can keep them healthy and easy to clean before problems have a chance to develop.
Dental sealants offer protection lasting three to five years after the initial application. At your regular checkups, your dentist will examine how your sealants are holding up to daily chewing and ensure that they remain intact. Eventually, the plastic coating will begin to wear away, at which point your dentist can easily touch up the area with more sealant or replace them with a new treatment.
Dental sealants are a safe and effective preventative measure for children, both for their primary “baby” teeth and with the emergence of their permanent molars. Since primary teeth are thinner than permanent teeth, sealants can offer an important layer of protection against the early development of cavities.
As permanent teeth come in, the early application of sealants can preserve their health from the start. Since children are often more inclined to sugary foods and beverages and may still be developing their oral hygiene habits, applying sealants at an early age can be a powerful defense against cavities.
If you’re interested in protecting your teeth with dental sealants, talk to us at Dow’s Lake Dental Clinic in Little Italy. Dentists at our Preston Street location take pride in offering professional services in a comfortable and approachable atmosphere. Reach out to us today by contacting our Ottawa office at (613) 406-6464 — we’ll address your concerns and discuss the best course of action to preserve your healthy, vibrant smile.
Common Questions About Sealants
The process of getting dental sealants typically involves the following steps:
The benefits of dental sealants include:
Overall, dental sealants are a simple, safe, and effective way to help protect teeth from decay and maintain good oral health.
Dental sealants can be removed if necessary, although this is usually not recommended unless there is a specific reason to do so, such as if the sealant has become damaged or decay has formed underneath it.
In terms of how often dental sealants need to be replaced, this can vary depending on several factors, such as the type of sealant used, the patient's oral hygiene habits, and the overall condition of the teeth. In general, dental sealants can last for several years with proper care but may need to be replaced if they become worn or damaged.