Cavities are one of the most common dental problems that can be painful and costly to repair. Fortunately, with regular care and preventive treatment in the form of dental sealants, you can help protect your teeth from decay. Dental sealants are a great way to prevent cavities as they provide a protective barrier over the chewing surfaces of molars. Let’s learn more about how they protect your teeth.
1. What Are Dental Sealants?
Dental sealants are a thin plastic coating your dentist can apply to the chewing surfaces of permanent molars. The sealant blocks food and bacteria from getting into the grooves of your teeth, which can cause cavities. Sealants are generally clear or slightly tinted so they can blend in with your teeth and are not very noticeable.
2. How Do Dental Sealants Prevent Cavities?
Dental sealants form a protective barrier that prevents tooth decay-causing bacteria from entering the grooves of your molars. It helps to stop cavities before they have a chance to form in these hard-to-reach areas. A single application can last up to ten years and protect your teeth from cavities.
3. Who Should Get Dental Sealants?
Dental sealants are most effective when applied to healthy teeth as soon as they have erupted. Generally, dentists recommend sealants for children ages 6-14 who are at higher risk of cavities due to their still-developing oral hygiene habits. Adults may also benefit from dental sealants if they have deep grooves in their molars and are prone to cavities.
4. Are Dental Sealants Effective?
Yes! According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, dental sealants can reduce cavities by up to 80% in the back teeth in a 2-year period. This makes them an effective and inexpensive way to prevent cavities and maintain good oral health.
5. How Do I Care For My Dental Sealants?
It’s important to take good care of your dental sealants by brushing and flossing regularly. Be sure to avoid biting on hard foods that could wear down the sealant and make it less effective in protecting your teeth from decay. If you notice any chipping or wear of your sealants, contact your dentist right away.
Dental sealants are an important tool in preventing cavities, as they provide a protective barrier on the chewing surfaces of your molars. If you think your teeth could benefit from this preventive measure, talk to us about whether dental sealants are right for you.