Sealants are a white or tooth-colored material that gets bonded to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth in the hopes of preventing tooth decay and cavities.
The most common area for children and adults to get tooth decay is on their permanent (adult) back teeth, which are called “molars”. The molars have very deep grooves and pits on the chewing surfaces that trap food and bacteria that forms cavities. Despite proper brushing, it can be nearly impossible to remove all of the bacteria from the grooves and pits in your back molars. This is where sealants can help prevent tooth decay and cavities. Sealants make the grooves of the teeth smoother so you or your child’s toothbrush can more easily keep the tooth clean.
Dr. Reese practices biomimetic dentistry which uses biocompatible materials for sealants. He does this because he believes in mimicking nature and whole body, holistic dentistry. Read more about nationally recognized, Dr. Reese, and his philosophy of quality dental care in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Frequently Asked Questions
How are sealants applied?
The teeth are first isolated and cleaned, then they are etched with a solution or micro air abrasion to help the sealant adhere better and last longer. Finally, the sealant is brushed on and then a special light is used to harden the material.
Does it hurt to get a sealant applied?
No, this is a pain-free procedure and there is no need for anesthetic. However, if you are a phobic patient who is nervous or unsettled about the procedure, gas sedation might be a good fit for you.
When should sealants be applied?
Sealants are recommended for children when they get their permanent first molars (around 6 years of age) and again when they get their permanent second molars (around 12 years of age).