As the name implies, a tooth sealant seals up the grooves and depressions on posterior molars. It is a liquid resin that is painted onto the surface of the back molars. Anesthesia is not necessary. The sealant is hardened or bonded to the tooth with an ultraviolet light source. This blocks the buildup of food and plaque deep within the natural cracks of the tooth.
Children and teens (and sometimes even adults!) don't always practice good oral hygiene; sealants are a great way to protect young, permanent teeth. Sometimes baby teeth are sealed due to their deep grooves and depressions. By protecting the baby teeth, you protect the overall mouth whereby holding the space needed for when the permament teeth come in. We offer this procedure for adults as well to protect unfilled teeth from decay.
Just a single visit is required for a sealant procedure. The teeth are thoroughly cleaned and dried. The teeth are then prepared by using a mild acid solution to carefully score the teeth. This helps the sealant to bond well to the surface. The teeth are then rinsed and dried well, and the sealant is then painted onto the enamel. A blue curing light is used to help the sealant harden.
Sealants can protect teeth from decay for up to 10 years. They do need to be checked regularly for chips and excessive wear. They can easily be added on to and repaired. Sealants are another method of good oral hygiene and an excellent prevention from tooth decay. They are a great cavity prevention regiment, which all parents should consider.