Did you know that your molars and premolars are the teeth that are most likely to develop cavities? This is because they’re particularly hard to clean with a toothbrush thanks to their location as well as the pits and grooves in their enamel. How can you stop plaque and food particles from collecting on these vulnerable teeth? Luckily, Petty Dental can use dental sealants in Tullahoma to give your pearly whites a little extra protection against decay; if you think your mouth could benefit, contact us and schedule an appointment today!
Dental sealants are made from a special kind of plastic or other dental materials. They stick to the chewing surfaces of the teeth, forming a barrier against food particles and bacteria. They’re usually applied to molars and premolars because they provide plenty of additional space for bacteria to become trapped.
Sealants can last for up to 10 years, although regular checkups are necessary to make sure it hasn’t been chipped away; if damage is found, it can be repaired by adding more sealant material. In the meantime, the protection offered is very effective; the CDC estimates that sealants prevent 80% of cavities for about two years after being applied. That said, it’s still important to brush and floss every day to make sure your pearly whites are as clean as possible!
If you get cavities on a regular basis, dental sealants might be able to help keep your teeth healthy and prevent you from needing fillings. Children and teens are generally good candidates for sealants since they tend to get cavities more often. This is especially true for those who don’t clean their teeth on a regular basis or indulge in sugary treats too often.
Remember that if a tooth becomes decayed and isn’t treated in time, it’ll likely have to be removed altogether. Getting dental sealants now could help you avoid an extraction later; better safe than sorry!
Applying dental sealants is fast, painless and usually only takes one visit; no drilling or enamel removal is required. We’ll simply clean and dry the tooth before coating it with a special gel that is then allowed to dry. Once it does, we’ll apply the sealant to the tooth and let it harden; this is sometimes done with a special curing light.
Keep in mind that the sealant resin can be clear, or it might be tinted so that it matches the natural color of your teeth; either way, most people won’t notice it when you laugh or smile.
Most of the time, sealants are used for young children. It’s normally recommended to have them applied between the ages of 6 and 12, or after their permanent molars have erupted. That way we can protect your little ones’ teeth as soon as possible before the bacteria in their mouths have had a chance to accumulate.