Taking good care of your teeth is essential for maintaining your oral health and preventing serious issues, including cavities, from developing. However, no matter how well you brush your teeth, there are some areas that are just more difficult to effectively clean. One such region is the chewing surfaces of your molars. With deep crevices, these areas of your teeth can easily collect bacteria and food debris, increasing your risk for cavities. Sylvan Heights Dental can provide you with an additional layer of protection with sealants.
What are Sealants?
Sealants are a treatment designed to help protect your teeth against the formation of decay and cavities. They are a synthetic application made up of plastic and are applied to the chewing surfaces of your molars, where deep crevices can collect bacteria, food particles, and other debris. Sealants are designed to seal these crevices, preventing buildup from accumulating. They also make your teeth easier to maintain. These factors, when combined with proper oral hygiene practices, can help to greatly reduce your risk of developing cavities.
Helping You to Protect Your Teeth
The process for placing sealants is very quick and can be completed in less than 30 minutes. The process is completely painless and non-invasive. Before receiving sealants, however, existing cavities do need to be treated. The process begins with a thorough tooth cleaning. We work to make sure that the surfaces of your molars are completely clear of any bacteria and other debris.
Next, we apply an acid etch to the molars, which helps to roughen the surfaces. A rough texture aids in enhancing the bond between the sealant material and your tooth enamel. After we wash the acid off, we thoroughly dry your teeth. The sealant material is applied to the surfaces of your molars, and light is used to cure it. Once dried, the material provides your teeth with immediate protection.
How Long Do Sealants Last?
Even though sealants are made of plastic, they are still fairly strong and can stand up to a significant amount of daily use. They can last for several years. If your sealants become damaged, we can easily reapply them.
While sealants help to protect the chewing surfaces of your molars from cavities, they are not a substitute for good oral hygiene practices. Sealants can only protect the areas they cover. Other areas of your teeth can still develop decay and cavities. Optimal cavity prevention also requires that you continue to brush and floss your teeth every day and have your teeth professionally cleaned and examined at least twice a year.
Who Gets Sealants?
Sealants are often thought to be only a treatment that children get. While they are common in children, as younger individuals are more at risk for developing cavities, sealants can protect anyone, regardless of how old you are. If you are prone to cavities and are looking for a way to provide your teeth with additional protection, sealants may be the solution for you.
Sealants help to provide your teeth with an extra layer of protection against the formation cavities. Call Sylvan Heights Dental today at (503) 388-5882 to learn more and find out if sealants are right for you.