Highly effective in preventing decay on the biting surfaces of your molars, dental sealants are a simple procedure in which a tooth-colored acrylic coating is painted onto the surface of the tooth. This effectively seals the deep grooves where decay is most likely to start.
A sealant is a thin, plastic coating applied to the chewing surface of molars, premolars and any deep grooves (called pits and fissures) of teeth. More than 75% of dental decay begins in these deep grooves. Teeth with these conditions are hard to clean and are very susceptible to decay. A sealant protects the tooth by sealing deep grooves, creating a smooth, easy to clean surface.
Children benefit greatly from dental sealants because thoroughly brushing back teeth can be difficult for kids. If Dr. Hoff recommends dental sealants for your child, don’t worry about professional removal of the sealant. The material will wear off naturally and safely over the years, providing a strong shield against decay at first, then simply dissolving when the child is old enough to no longer need the protection.
Reasons for sealants include:
- Children and teenagers – As soon as the six-year molars (the first permanent back teeth) appear or any time throughout the cavity prone years of 6-16.
- Adults – Tooth surfaces without decay that have deep grooves or depressions.
- Baby teeth – Occasionally done if teeth have deep grooves or depressions and child is cavity prone.
Proper home care, a balanced diet, and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your new sealants.