Dental Sealants in Bloomingdale
What is a dental sealant?
A dental sealant is a plastic material that is usually applied to the back
teeth, or premolars and molars. This plastic resin bonds into the depressions
and grooves, or pits and fissures, of the chewing surfaces of those molars.
How do dental sealants work?
Although thorough brushing and flossing helps remove food particles and
plaque from smooth surfaces of teeth, toothbrush bristles cannot reach
deep enough into depressions and grooves to extract all of the food and
plaque that may have accumulated there. Sealants work by protecting these
vulnerable areas, acting as a barrier and protecting enamel from plaque
and acids, thus preventing food particles and plaque from decaying in
pits and fissures.
Is sealant application a complicated procedure?
No. Sealants are very easy for your dentist to apply; the process only
takes a couple of minutes for each tooth.
First, the teeth that will be sealed are cleaned. The chewing surfaces
are then roughened with an acid solution to help the sealant to better
adhere to the tooth. The sealant is then ‘painted’ onto the
tooth enamel, where it bonds directly to the tooth and hardens. Sometimes,
a special curing light is used to help the sealant harden.
As long as the sealant remains intact, the tooth surface will be protected
from decay. Sealants can withstand the force of normal chewing very well,
and will usually last several years before a reapplication is needed.
During your regular dental visits, your dentist should check the condition
of the sealants and reapply them when necessary.
Who qualifies for sealants?
The development of pit and fissure decay begins early in life, making children
and teenagers excellent candidates for the procedure. The protection provided
by the sealants is, however, beneficial for patients of all ages.
What else can I do to prevent tooth decay?
Preventing tooth decay and maintaining a healthy mouth is a matter of good
oral hygiene. Twice-daily brushing with an American Dental Association
approved fluoride toothpaste, regularly cleaning between the teeth with
floss or other interdental cleaners, eating a balanced diet and limiting
snacks, and visiting your dentist regularly are all key components of
a healthy smile. With a proper dental care routine, dental sealants can
be a great ally in your fight against tooth decay and disease. Ask your
dentist about whether sealants can put a little extra power behind your