What are Dental Sealants?

What are Dental Sealants?

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The purpose of a sealant is to serve as a preventive measure, aiding in the protection of teeth against the development of cavities. Sealants are applied to the biting surfaces of the back teeth to create a physical barrier that prevents germs and food particles from accumulating and becoming lodged within the deeper grooves of the premolars or molars.  This is especially important for the back teeth, as their deep grooves and pits can be difficult to clean thoroughly with regular brushing, however certain front teeth with deep pits can benefit from sealants, too. By sealing these vulnerable areas, the risk of cavities forming is significantly reduced.

According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), dental sealants prevent 80% of cavities in the first two years after they’re applied to back teeth (molars and premolars), where about 90% of cavities form.  Even after 4 years, well-maintained sealants still reduce the risk of cavity development by at least 50%.

Sealants can last up to 4-9 years depending on diet and oral health routines. After placement, they should be checked for wear and effectiveness at regular dental appointments. Sealants are commonly recommended for children and teenagers, as they are more prone to cavities due to their oral hygiene habits and the anatomy of their developing teeth.  Ideally and for best results, sealants should be placed as soon as the tooth appears in the mouth and has grown in far enough to allow the area to be kept dry during the procedure.  However, sealants can also be
beneficial for adults, especially if their teeth have deep grooves that are susceptible to decay.

Dental sealants are a simple and effective way to provide an added layer of protection against cavities, contributing to better oral health and minimizing the need for more extensive dental work in the future.  To schedule an appointment with one of our dentists, contact us today at +1-613-544-2224.  We look forward to seeing you!