Make Sure Your Children are the Only Ones Eating their Lunch!
After eating, if your children do not properly clean their teeth, bacteria eats sugar and starch from food and uses it as a source of energy. The bacteria convert sugar and starch into harmful acids that attack tooth enamel. If repeated attacks are allowed, they may cause the tooth enamel to break down, which will result in cavities.
Are Some Areas of Teeth Harder to Clean than Others?
When a tooth is developing, deep grooves form in the biting surfaces of the back teeth. These grooves are called "fissures". When two or more fissures intersect, it is called a "pit." Thorough daily brushing, flossing, and rinsing help remove food particles and bacterial plaque from the smooth surfaces of teeth. But because toothbrush bristles cannot reach all the way into the pits and fissures, food and bacteria cannot be easily removed. Tooth sealants protect these vulnerable areas by "sealing out" plaque and food.
What is a Tooth Sealant and How Does it Work?
A selant is a resin material that is applied to the pits and fissures of back teeth. The sealant resin acts as a barrier, protecting the enamel from bacteria and plaque in cavity prone areas. Decay will not start under a tooth sealant because the decay causing bacteria are deprived of the food they need to survive.
Children are much more susceptible to tooth decay than adults. When possible, sealants should be applied to children's teeth before decay has had a chance to begin.
Does the process hurt?
Sealants are easy and painless for your dentist to apply, and it only takes a few minutes to seal each tooth. As long as the sealant remains intact, the sealed tooth surface will be protected from decay. Sealants hold up well under the force of normal chewing and usually last several years. During your regular dental visits, your dentist will check the condition of the sealants and reapply them if necessary.