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What are Sealants?

Brushing and flossing may be the best way to say goodbye to cavities, but these are not enough to clean every corner of our teeth — most especially our molars. We use our molars to chew food, and since they’re usually at the back, they’re hard to reach. Our molars are also uneven, rough, and the best place for food leftovers and bacteria to hide.

This is where sealants become helpful. They are safety nets that can keep the hidden areas of our teeth clean. Sealants are thin, plastic-made protective coating adhering to your back teeth’ chewing surface. While they’re not substitutes for flossing and brushing, they can effectively keep cavities from thriving and save the teeth from decay.

Sealants also show a potent ability to reduce molar decay risks by over 80%. This benefit is especially advantageous in keeping the children’s dental health. According to the 2016 report of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), children aging six to 11 can benefit the most from sealants. Their study found out that sealants provide three times protection from dental cavities in school-age children.

Benefits of Sealants

You can think of sealants as teeth raincoats. Cavity-causing bacteria often lives and thrives in your mouth because of uncleaned leftover food particles. These particles create hole-boring acids where cavities grow and settle. When the sealant is applied to the affected areas, the leftover food and bacteria are stopped from further settling on your mouth and teeth. They serve as raincoat that can keep you dry, safe, and clean during rainy and stormy days.

Who are Sealants for?

Both adults and children can benefit from dental sealants. However, you need to remember that the younger you are, the more benefits you can enjoy from dental sealants. Your molars should first appear at six, with the second one breaking through at 12. If you seal your teeth by this time, you can keep cavities away. This can save you money and time in the long run. If you’re unsure, you can always refer to your dentist.

Additional Benefits

Reaches hidden areas of the teeth

Also known as fissure sealants, dental sealants are applied to the teeth found at the back part of your mouth. These areas are the most susceptible to all forms of decay. While superficial fissures and grooves don’t require sealing, the smaller and deeper ones do, simply because they can’t be thoroughly reached and cleaned with a regular toothbrush. The bristles of a traditional toothbrush are usually too big to reach these secluded areas.

How Long Do Dental Bridges Last?

The dental sealants bond even with the most minor molar groove before drying them. Once dried, it creates a hard shell-like cover that serves as the tooth enamel’s protective shield. They keep away from these grooves, effectively preventing bacteria buildup. If these bacteria don’t build up, tooth decay can be efficiently avoided. The sealant-formed surface ends up smooth and easily cleaned.

The early remedy to avoid costly and painful procedures

If a cavity develops in the tooth, it will more expensive and more laborious to treat the damage. At the onset, it’s better to have it sealed. There’s no need to worry since applying sealants is both painless and safe. You can protect your tooth from cavities and decay with minimal dental intervention.

Do Dental Bridges Have Any Risks?

These sealants will also wear down with time. Though the material used to make it, most sealants last and remain effective for five to ten years. But this doesn’t mean that you can continue wearing them without checking with your dentist. To ensure that they are still serving their purpose, keep them regularly checked by your tooth doctor. It’s enough that you schedule your sealant check once a year. Your dentist will advise if there are signs of wearing and chipping.

If any of these conditions occur, your dentist will most likely advise replacing or adding more sealant to ensure that your teeth stay protected and decay-free.

Final Thoughts

You need to aggressively invest in your dental hygiene and health to spare yourself from pain, hassle, and expensive procedures. As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.