What is a sealant?
Why would I want a dental sealant?
A sealant is our first line of defense for a cavity and is great for younger patients or patients with teeth that have very deep grooves. A sealant, if indicated, can help block bacteria from getting into nooks and crannies of your tooth that are difficult to clean.
How does it work?
If your tooth does not have a cavity, but your tooth appears to have deep grooves that would be difficult to clean, a sealant is a great option.
A runny material flows into the grooves and pits of the teeth and a light is used to harden the material, making is strong and resilient to your biting forces.
Once in place, the sealant acts as a seal to prevent bacteria and sugar from getting into those deeper pits and grooves to help prevent a future cavity in that area.
Sealants are make of a very similar material that fillings are made out of, with the difference being that the sealants we use flow much more easily into the many grooves of the teeth, and the sealant material also contains fluoride to prevent future cavities. Sealants are a vital part of a preventative plan for kids, and sometimes adults, that ensure the tooth is sealed against bacterial invasion.
Keep in mind that sealants seal the top of the tooth, but hygiene and diet are still just as critical to prevent cavities on the inaccessible sides of the teeth where good and bacteria like to hide.