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What Is a Dental Sealant Used in General Dentistry?
In general dentistry, it might be recommended that your child receive dental sealants. However, you might not know much about this treatment. These are plastic coatings that go on the molars of the back teeth. These are known as the premolars and the molars. This can protect the teeth from decay.
Why would dental sealants be placed?
There are grooves on the chewing surfaces of all the teeth. These are known as fissures. This makes the teeth susceptible to decay. The grooves can be deep, making them difficult to clean properly. Sometimes, the indentations are deeper than the toothbrush.
This means that plaque can easily accumulate in the spot. Bacteria in the plaque can produce acid that attacks the enamel. This causes cavities to start to form. Fluoride can help prevent decay in the teeth. However, a dental sealant is a form of extra protection for these pitted and grooved areas. It gives the grooved surface a smoother area.
When do children receive dental sealants?
In general dentistry, the first dental sealant will be placed on the first permanent tooth. This will happen once the tooth’s chewing surface has completely erupted past the gum. The tooth will grow behind the child’s baby teeth. If the teeth’s chewing surfaces are sealed, then the tooth will be protected.
The wisdom teeth come in much later. Besides these teeth, all the premolars and the molars will erupt until the child is 11 to 13 years old. Each time the teeth erupt, the surfaces of the teeth can be sealed. The dentist will decide when the right time to seal the teeth will be.
Where the sealants are placed
Only the chewing surfaces of the teeth will receive dental sealants. These areas are usually the ones that have the deepest grooves. However, a patient might receive sealants on other teeth as well if there are pits. That will protect the surface better.
With some children, the baby teeth also have grooves in them. These could benefit from the use of sealants. In general dentistry, it might be recommended for the primary teeth to get sealants. This does not happen too often, however.
Adults may also receive dental sealants. This is not as common as for children. Some adults may be at risk for cavities. If there are no fillings, the sealant can be placed there with ease.
How sealants are placed
The dentist will clean the teeth first to remove the plaque and any food particles. In general dentistry, the tooth will be roughened. That way, the sealant will stick. Then the dentist will carefully paint the sealant over the teeth.
Choose general dentistry for sealants
If you think that dental sealants may be right for you or your child, contact your dentist. Your dentist can determine if you might be a good candidate. Having regular dental appointments will help the rest of your teeth stay healthy as well. Making an appointment today can help you get healthier teeth.
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