Sealants are used to fill in the narrow grooves in a tooth that cannot be adequately cleaned by brushing. In some cases, the tooth structure has fine grooves or pits which accumulate plaque-not because the person doesn’t brush, but because they’re too narrow to allow even one bristle into them. Left untreated, these grooves/pits will develop cavities over time. Dr. Louscher or Dr. Brantner will brush on a coating that seals the grooves and pits, making it possible to brush off all the plaque while keeping your teeth healthy.
Dental sealants are plastic coatings or barriers that protect the teeth against decay-causing bacteria. Usually, sealants are applied to the chewing surfaces of your back teeth (premolars and molars) where decay occurs most often. Applying a sealant to your teeth can prevent cavities and the need for fillings, which must be replaced every six to eight years. Children especially benefit from sealants.
Q: How do sealants protect teeth?
A: A sealant is a plastic material that is usually applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth—(premolars and molars). This plastic resin bonds into the depressions and grooves (pits and fissures) of the chewing surfaces of back teeth. The sealant acts as a barrier, protecting enamel from plaque and acids and guarding against disease-causing bacteria.
Thorough brushing and flossing help remove food particles and plaque from smooth surfaces of teeth. However, toothbrush bristles cannot reach all the way into the depressions and grooves to efficiently extract food and plaque. Sealants protect these vulnerable areas by “sealing out” plaque and food.