Dental sealants are a plastic, resin material that is placed in the deep grooves of molars (back teeth) to make them more shallow and easier to clean. This helps to prevent cavities. They are typically placed on the first molars, which erupt around age six and the second molars around age twelve but may be placed on premolars (bicuspids) if deep grooves are present. If the third molars (wisdom teeth) are not removed, it’s a good idea to seal the grooves on those teeth as well, because they are so far back in the mouth and very hard to reach to clean properly.
Sealants are applied by cleaning out the groove, applying a solution to make the sealant stick to the tooth better, and then applying the sealant material. The material is light cured in about forty seconds.
Most people think of applying sealants on children’s teeth because we typically try to seal teeth once they erupt to protect them; however, it’s a good idea to protect adult teeth too! A dental sealant is much less in cost than a filling, so it’s a great investment to protect those pearly whites!
Sealants last between five and ten years typically, depending on how much the person grinds their teeth.
If you would like to know more about dental sealants, give us a call!