Sealants

 

What are sealants?

Sealants are a clear or white plastic that are placed in the groves of the biting surfaces of the back teeth to protect them from the destructive effects of plaque.

 

Why are sealants needed?

Back teeth have deep groves and pits that are very difficult to keep clean. Plaque, which is a nearly invisible film of bacteria and food, collects in these grooves. To make plaque easier to see, we may stain the plaque with a harmless red dye.

Every time you eat, the bacteria in plaque forms acid. Without sealants, these acid attacks can cause the enamel to break down, and you get a cavity.

 

How are sealants placed?

To place sealants, you usually don’t even have to be numb. First we thoroughly clean and dry the teeth, and a conditioning solution is applied. Then the sealant material is brushed into the grooves. Some types of sealants harden on their own, while others harden when exposed to a special light.

Sealants are an important part of a preventative dental care program.