In the 1970’s the dental sealant was developed, approved by the FDA and accepted by dentists as an outstanding tool in the prevention of dental decay. Dr. Nicholas Kemp, your dentist serving downtown Toronto, can apply dental sealants in a few brief moments giving your child years of protection from cavities.
A dental sealant is applied to the back permanent teeth most usually as soon as they have erupted. Your child’s first back molars usually appear around the age of six, with the second molars growing in around age twelve. Visiting the dentist for a professional cleaning and application of the dental sealant as soon as possible after the back molars appear is very advantageous.
A dental sealant is a very thin material applied on the back molars that basically covers the chewing surface of the tooth with a protective coating. This prevents the bacteria that cause dental decay from forming on the surfaces of the teeth that have been treated.
The benefits of protecting the back teeth with dental sealants include:
- Prevention of decay resulting in healthier teeth
- Painful cavity fillings avoided
- The cost of sealants versus dental fillings is vast in both time and money
- Sealants are virtually undetectable so they provide that extra protection without being seen.
Although children are the primary recipients of dental sealants, adults can also benefit from this treatment. Anyone who wants to protect their back molars from developing dental decay should consider dental sealants.
The process of applying dental sealants could not be easier. After a professional dental cleaning, your dentist or hygienist applies a product to the tooth to help the sealant adhere. The sealant is then applied to the chewing surface of the tooth, allowed to harden naturally or hastened with a curing light, and the process is completed in a couple of minutes. This treatment might need to be re-applied occasionally over the years, so consistent professional cleaning and dental exams are essential.
The surface of our back teeth contains many small pits and crevasses where bacteria can form and cavities develop. While brushing and flossing, along with fluoride rinses, are great tools they cannot replace the twice yearly visits to the dentist for a professional cleaning and exam to make sure the dental sealants are still in place and doing their job.