We believe in preventive dentistry at Michelle Munoz, DDS, and that begins at home with proper brushing and regular flossing of your teeth. Sometimes, no matter how conscientious you are, some teeth, especially those in the back, are difficult to keep clean. And some people, for a variety of reasons, are just cavity prone. These are situations where we may recommend the use of dental sealants.
What Are Dental Sealants?
Your teeth, especially your molars, have natural pits and crevices that help grind up food when you chew. Unfortunately, food particles and bacteria are often caught in these pockets. Dental sealants are thin coats of liquid resin that are painted on teeth to protect them from cavities by creating a “bacteria barrier.” While sealants are most often recommended for children whose permanent teeth are starting to come in before cavities have developed, this cavity prevention benefits all ages, including adults.
Why We Like Dental Sealants
Studies done with school-age children have shown that those without sealants had almost three times more cavities than those with dental sealants. And the benefit is long-lasting. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that dental sealants prevent more than 80% of cavities in the molars after two years of application, and over 50% of cavities after 4 years.
Painless and Quick Procedure
There is no drilling involved. The teeth involved are cleaned and dried. A gel is applied to help the sealant adhere to the tooth. The liquid sealant is applied to the grooved areas and hardens in seconds with the aid of a special light. That’s all there is to it.
Saves Money and Time
Sealants are cheaper than fillings. Being proactive can save you the time and expense of repairing caries-affected teeth. Untreated cavities can lead to even more damaging and costly issues such as root canals or loss of teeth.
Once the dental sealant has set, there is no additional action needed other than practicing your normal good hygiene habits of daily brushing and flossing and maintaining regular checkups and cleanings. Should an area of sealant become worn down over time, a new layer of sealant can be applied on top of the old sealant to fill it in.
There Is No Substitute for Good Oral Hygiene
Sealants are not a replacement for proper brushing and flossing and regular dental checkups, but they are a safe and effective tool for keeping your smile healthy and beautiful. If you live in the Uvalde, Texas, area, contact us today for an appointment to find out if dental sealants are right for you!