What Are Dental Sealants & How Do They Assist with Oral Health?

What Are Dental Sealants & How Do They Assist with Oral Health?

March 1, 2022

Your premolars and molars developing during childhood and teenage years have deep grooves, pits, and fissures comfortable for food particles and bacteria to remain trapped even when you brush and floss as recommended by your dentist. Cleaning your back teeth is challenging because the bristles of your toothbrush don’t reach all the crevices of your teeth. Flossing them is practically impossible and makes them a prime target for tooth decay and cavities to occur.

What are Dental Sealants?

Dental sealants are thin and durable plastic coatings that, when painted on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth, help prevent tooth decay. The sealants create a smoother surface over the teeth bonding into the depressions and grooves to form a protective shield over the tooth enamel. Dental sealants help your oral health by protecting vulnerable areas from tooth decay by sealing out plaque and food particles.

Who Can Get Dental Sealants?

Although dental sealants are routinely recommended for children and teenagers because of their likelihood of developing tooth decay in their premolars and molars, dental sealants weren’t created exclusively for children. Adults without decay or fillings in their back teeth can also benefit from dental sealants.

Generally, our dentist in 77568 recommends dental sealants for children on their permanent molars and premolars soon after eruption. When sealants are applied to children’s teeth between the cavity-prone years of six to 14, the application protects children’s teeth. Dental sealants are also appropriate for baby teeth in some cases, especially if the teeth have deep grooves and depressions. Baby teeth play an essential role by holding the correct spacing for permanent teeth. Therefore it is crucial to maintain these teeth and health conditions to ensure they are not lost prematurely.

The Dental Sealant Application Procedure

The application procedure for dental sealants is straightforward and painless, both for children and adults. Moreover, the time required for the process is merely a few minutes for the dentist in la Marque. The application procedure proceeds as follows:

The targeted teeth for sealing are thoroughly cleaned. After the cleaning, the tooth is dried with cotton or other absorbent material. Next, an etching solution is applied on the chewing surfaces of the teeth to rough them up to help the sealant adhere to the tooth. After that, they are rinsed again and dried.

Finally, the dental sealant is applied to the tooth enamel, where it adheres to the tooth and hardens. Dental sealants in La Marque, TX, also use a special light to help the sealant harden.

How Dental Sealants Benefits Your Oral Health

Here are the advantages of dental sealants:

  • Getting dental sealants on children’s teeth is beneficial because the bonds protect against tooth decay by 80 percent for the initial two years, by 50 percent for the next four years, and remain on the teeth for up to nine years. However, the sealants are prone to chipping and need monitoring during regular dental appointments. If required, dentists can replace dental sealants when they notice they have worn off. In addition, children with sealants on their teeth report fewer lost school hours or require frequent treatments from dentists to deal with tooth decay and other dental issues.
  • Children without sealants are 57 percent more likely to develop cavities on their teeth, unlike their counterparts who continue enjoying better oral health. Therefore besides helping children avoid problems with their teeth, dental sealants also allow parents to save money by avoiding emergency dental visits to treat tooth decay.
  • Dental sealants are a cost-effective protective barrier on children’s teeth, costing merely $30-$60 per tooth, with insurance plans reducing the costs further. If you need dental sealants as an adult, you can discuss the treatment costs with the dentist before receiving the treatment.
  • The painless nature of the treatment and the minimal time required to complete it is a significant benefit because filling a cavity requires appointments with dentists besides expenditure costing hundreds of dollars. In addition, the hole in the tooth creates permanent damage that needs restoration sometime later.
  • Dental sealants help protect against tooth decay and prevent the need for frequent dental appointments for children or adults to restore teeth because of tooth decay. Of course, the sealants preserve oral health to help children safeguard their teeth without developing cavities.
  • Getting dental sealants doesn’t permit anyone to neglect dental hygiene, as the dentist recommends. Brushing and flossing remain essential requirements besides six-monthly appointments for exams and cleanings to prevent tooth decay and gum disease.

Get Tooth Sealants Near You

If you think you or your children can benefit from dental sealants, please schedule an appointment with South Star Dental to have dental sealants.