has come so far in recent decades, sometimes it’s hard to keep up. One of the reasons why it is so hard to keep teeth clean is because they have a lot of surface area that is hard to reach. A huge amount of a tooth is pitted and fissured
in ways that do not lend themselves to easy cleaning. The top of a tooth looks like a mountain range – peaks and ridges flow down into valleys and pits. All of which can store bits of bacteria and food material if not cleaned frequently. This is where dental sealants come in.
How Dental Sealants WorkDental sealants
act as the tooth’s first line of defense against cavity causing agents. Applied to the biting surface of the tooth it acts as a hard, tooth colored shield, protecting them from decay. Sealants are a widely accepted and extremely effective method for preventing cavities.
Dental Sealants are typically made of either a resin or a glass ionomer material. They are almost invisible at a glance and therefore don’t change your outward appearance in the way something like a silver colored filling might. Sealants are usually used on the molars of children but it has become commonplace for adults to have them applied as well. Typically, they are recommended for those at high risk of cavities – children and those with weak enamel. With that in mind, sealants are considered a precautionary measure and it is never a bad idea to take preventive measures when dealing with oral hygiene.
The lifetime of a typical dental sealant is around five years. They are subjected to all of the wear and tear that normally takes place in a mouth
. Chewing, grinding and chomping do take their toll on sealants so it is advised that you see your dentist for an exam
every six months to ensure they remain in-tact.
Potential Drawbacks to Using Dental Sealants
For the most part sealants are extremely safe, effective, and useful at preventing cavities. There are only a few scenarios where dental sealants show mildly significant drawbacks. The biggest detractor to a sealant is that they only work if they are attached to the tooth. If for some reason or, over a long period of time a sealant becomes cracked or peels away from the tooth it can no longer be effective.
One of the most common sealant failures is through contamination by saliva while they are being applied to the teeth. If a tooth is not properly prepared to accept a dental sealant it can still hold some contaminants, usually in the form of saliva. We take great pride in our work here at Cedar Creek Dental and will do our very best to ensure that your sealants are applied with care so that they last for years to come.
As part of your normal preventive dental measures you should be coming to see us at least two times a year for dental cleanings and exams
. We will always examine your sealants to ensure they are doing their job.
Please give our office at call at (503) 498-6030
to schedule your appointment to discuss whether dental sealants are the right choice for you. We look forward to helping you maintain a happy, healthy smile!