Brushing and flossing are important habits for preventing the formation of cavities in your teeth. It is recommended that you brush twice a day and floss once a day to help protect your teeth. However, even if you follow the guidelines for keeping your teeth healthy, there are certain areas of your mouth where cavities are more likely to form. Once area most vulnerable to cavities in the chewing surfaces of your molars. These areas have deep crevices that are often difficult to fully clean, even with regular brushing. At Healthy Smiles Family Dentistry, we can help to protect the surfaces of your molars with sealants.
How Did I Get a Cavity?
Cavities are a common dental issue that affects the teeth of millions of people. They are small pits that form in your teeth as a result of tooth decay. Decay happens when acids produced by plaque and bacteria sit on the surfaces of your teeth and erode the enamel. This erosion causes weak spots, which eventually leads to cavities. When cavities go untreated, they only continue to grow larger. As they do, the strength of the affected tooth becomes compromised and the tooth is put at risk for an infection.
Preventative Care With Sealants
The chewing surfaces of your molars are more vulnerable to cavity development. Even if you brush and floss your teeth daily, the chewing surfaces of your teeth have deep grooves that can capture food particles and bacteria. These areas can be difficult to completely clean with your toothbrush. Dental sealants are a treatment designed to protect these areas of your teeth. They are a synthetic application made up of plastics and other materials that are placed on the surfaces of your molars, effectively covering over their crevices. Sealants effectively seal out food particles and bacteria, and they also help to make your teeth easier to keep clean.
I Thought Only Kids Got Sealants
Sealants are commonly thought to be a treatment only for kids. This is often because kids are more prone to cavities than adults. However, sealants can be an effective treatment for anyone, regardless of age. If you are prone to cavities, you may be a candidate for sealants.
The process for getting sealants is quick, easy, and completely painless. Before applying sealants, we first need to clean your teeth and treat any cavities that may already be present. After the teeth have been cleaned, we then apply an acid etch to the surfaces of your molars. This is done to create a rough texture, ensuring a stronger bond between the sealant material and your teeth. The acid is washed off, and your teeth are dried. Next, we apply the sealant material and use a specialized light to cure, or dry, it. Once dry, sealants begin providing immediate protection.
How Long Will My Sealants Last?
Despite being made from plastic, sealants are fairly resilient. They can withstand most normal daily use and can last for several years with proper care. However, it is important to keep in mind that sealants are only effective when used in conjunction with regular dental care. Sealants only protect the areas of your teeth where they are applied. They are not a substitute for proper oral care. Cavities can still form on other surfaces of your teeth, including right around the border of the sealants. Taking proper care of your mouth will help sealants to do their job effectively.
With sealants, we can help you to more easily prevent the formation of cavities on your teeth, enabling to you maintain a happy, healthy mouth. For more information, and to find out if sealants are right for you, call Healthy Smiles Family Dentistry today at Tulsa: (539) 302-3266 Claremore: (918) 343-4300.