Dental sealants act as a barrier, protecting the teeth against decay-causing bacteria. The sealants are usually applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth (premolars and molars) where decay occurs most often.
How does a sealant help prevent decay?
A sealant is a plastic material that is usually applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth—premolars and molars. This plastic resin bonds into the depressions and grooves of the teeth and acts as a barrier to protect these vulerable areas from plaque and acid attack.
Is sealant application a complicated procedure?
Placement of sealants is an easy procedure for the patient.
The teeth that will be sealed are cleaned. Then the chewing surfaces are prepared with a solution to help the sealant adhere to the tooth. The sealant is then 'painted' onto the enamel, where it bonds directly to the tooth.
During your regular dental visits, your dentist will check the condition of the sealants and replace them if necessary.
Sealants are just for kids, right?
The likelihood of developing pit and fissure decay begins early in life, so children and teenagers are obvious candidates, but adults can benefit from sealants as well.