What are Sealants?
Even if you brush, floss, and rinse twice a day, there are fine grooves and small pits on the surface of your teeth that are nearly impossible to reach with normal oral hygiene. In these grooves and pits, plaque is accumulated over time no matter how thorough your oral hygiene is. Obviously, if this plaque is left untreated in the grooves and pits of your teeth, you eventually have cavities develop. A great option for preventing this is to have your dentist apply sealant to the most vulnerable teeth. This coating of sealant will provide a smooth surface over the unseen and unreachable pits in your teeth. The smooth surface will make it quite difficult for any bacteria to begin developing cavities in your teeth. It also makes it much simpler for you to brush away the plaque with your daily brushing and rinsing.
The most common place for this sealant to be applied is the chewing surfaces of difficult-to-reach back teeth. The sealant forms a strong bond with the surface of your teeth and becomes a protective shield over the enamel of your teeth. Even with the sealant, the patient should still brush his teeth regularly and thoroughly. The sealant simply provides another level of protection for vulnerable areas of your teeth.
Who are Sealants for?
A great time to apply the sealant is during early childhood. Sealant can provide great long-term protection on permanent molars and premolars between the ages of six to fourteen years old when children are especially prone to cavities. Sealants may also be appropriate when a dentist notices baby teeth with those hidden grooves or pits. Besides the aesthetic issues of baby teeth, these baby teeth also play an important role in holding the proper spacing for the permanent teeth of the future. This makes it crucial to keep these baby teeth healthy. You do not want these baby teeth to be lost too early.
Thankfully, the use of sealants is a minor treatment that can be done quickly and with minimum discomfort. The tooth that will be treated is thoroughly cleaned and then dried. An acid solution is then applied to that tooth to rough it up for better bonding of the sealant. After the application of the acid solution, the tooth is again rinsed and dried. Lastly, the protective sealant is spread thoroughly onto the enamel of the tooth so that it can bond, seal, and harden. Normally, this sealant will provide protection for up to ten years.
- I have a fear of needles, and due to that, I had let the condition of my teeth and mouth deteriorate. Thanks to the patience and gentle care of Dr. Shelly and his staff, I was able to have my teeth put back into great condition. Several long procedures were performed with sedation dentistry. During these procedures, I had no discomfort or pain. I am now a firm believer in sedation dentistry and Dr. Shelly in particular. I would recommend Dr. Shelly and his staff to anyone.
- I just wanted to say thank you to Dr. Lee & Dr. Fort for taking the time to provide the care I needed on such short notice yesterday to get me in for the root canal. I feel SO MUCH BETTER!!! For the first time in over a week, I had a great night's sleep last night! As with all of the staff and three doctors, I am so glad you are all such caring, pleasant, professional people to deal with on a consistent basis. Thank you!
- I would like to thank your practice for providing excellent service. I received a free exam and x-rays from Dr. Fort and was pleased with the attention, detail and courteous behavior. I think the free exam is a great way to attract clients. Not only that, but the questionnaire regarding any concerns or uncomfortable issues for the patient was appreciated. I had not been to the dentist in many years, and these services made my visit easy. Your office is to be commended for its “bedside manner” – so many health professionals lack that.
- Just a short note to thank everyone for the wonderful, patient, and caring treatment I received at your office. My anxiety level was sky high when I arranged to have the extensive dental work done; no one could have been more afraid than I was, but you all made it easy for me and thanks to the sedation help, I breezed through it. Many, many thanks to all! P.S. I’m really enjoying having a mouthful of beautiful teeth and chewing is a pleasure!
- I just wanted to thank you for the movie tickets and for giving my wife such great treatment. I never expected to be rewarded for bugging my wife to get to the dentist. She loves you guys (as I told her for years that she would) and is glad she finally came in. See you again in a couple of months. Take care.
- I want to thank you for all the great work you have done with the braces and crowns. You do the best work I have seen and it is always a pleasure to come into the office. Your entire staff makes me feel welcome every time I come though the front door. Keep the great team work up. You are all the ‘Best.’