Between sugary foods, lingering bacteria, and problematic tooth decay, it can feel like an uphill battle to keep your teeth clean and healthy. Sealants are a standard of preventive dentistry, and Crosby Dentistry offers this extra barrier of protection for your teeth. Sealants are a literal shield that works to protect your teeth, keeping your smile healthy and bright. Our team likes to think of sealants as a way to keep your dental health working for you, even when you don’t immediately have a toothbrush in hand.
What Are Sealants?
Technically speaking, sealants are a thin layer of resin painted onto the tooth’s surface. The resin is clear, completely invisible, and entirely imperceptible to the touch. This thin resin layer takes only minutes to apply, but its benefits are long-lasting. Sealants are the foundation of preventive dentistry as they help in fending off possible bacteria and disease.
What Can Sealants Help With?
Sealants are the perfect way to help protect your teeth when brushing and flossing aren’t enough. A tooth is a rigid structure, but it is filled with tiny nooks, crannies, and uneven surfaces. While brushing can help remove exterior debris, sometimes tiny particles and bacteria can get deep within the tiny cracks, leading to decay and disease.
Also, big and flat teeth—like molars—are prone to a higher level of wear and tear as they work to grind and cut food that is pushed to the back of the mouth. Adding a sealant to back molars can help protect and preserve the teeth. When the sealant is painted over the tooth’s surface, it protects the tooth from penetrating bacteria and decay.
A sealant can also help with other common dental issues, including:
- Temperature sensitivity
- Light surface chipping and cracks
- Cavity prevention
- Added enamel protection
Are Sealants Necessary?
Your teeth can remain healthy without sealants, but you have a better chance of maintaining your healthy smile with an added shield. Although sealants are not necessary for optimum dental health, they can certainly give you the upper hand when fighting tooth decay and gum disease.
Sealants can be paired with other preventive dental procedures to make them even more effective. It is a widespread practice to couple a fluoride treatment with fresh sealants. Fluoride can provide additional strength and nutrients for the tooth, while the sealant will seal the tooth from potential bacteria and decay which could otherwise lead to cavities.
How Long Do Sealants Last?
Applying a coat of sealant to your teeth is an excellent preventive measure that will help keep your smile healthy. For most adults, a sealant will protect against 80 percent of decay and bacteria for up to two years. Further, a sealant can protect against 50 percent of decay for four years. After a sealant coating has worn away, Dr. Crosby can simply replace the resin with a fresh coat for renewed tooth protection.
Are Sealants Suitable for Anyone?
Sealants are a versatile, practical, and economical preventive dental measure. The process to apply a sealant is fast and easy, and it is well suited for just about everyone. Children usually get their adult teeth between the ages of five and seven, with the second permanent molars developing between ages eleven and thirteen. Our team always recommends applying sealants to your child’s teeth as soon as the adult teeth are in place. Sealants are perfect for adults, too, for an added layer of protection.
To maintain a beautiful, healthy smile, schedule your appointment with Dr. Crosby today. Our team looks forward to giving you all the options and information you need for optimal health.