A sealant is a thin, resin coating applied to the chewing surface of molars, bicuspids 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.
Sealants can protect teeth from decay for many years, but need to be checked for wear and chipping at regular dental visits.
Reasons for sealants:
Adults – Tooth surfaces without decay that have deep grooves or depressions. Usually, though, whatever grooves that are susceptible to decay would have already decayed and would have been restored. The only other factors would be increased vulnerability because of changes in saliva, diet, or ability to maintain good hygiene.
What do sealants involve?
Sealants are easily applied by your dentist or dental hygienist. It is a process requiring no anesthesia.
The teeth to be sealed are thoroughly cleaned and then surrounded with cotton to keep the area dry. A special solution is applied to the enamel surface to help the sealant bond to the teeth. The teeth are then rinsed and dried. Sealant material is carefully painted onto the enamel surface to cover the deep grooves or depressions. The resin is cured using a high-intensity curing light.
Proper home care, a balanced diet, and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your new sealants.