Brushing and flossing are essential daily habits for the prevention of tooth decay and cavities. However, even if you brush twice a day and floss every single day, there are certain parts of your mouth that may be more difficult to properly clean than others. The chewing surfaces of your molars are particularly vulnerable. These areas of your teeth have deep grooves that can trap food particles and bacteria and they can be difficult to thoroughly brush clean, increasing your risk for developing cavities even though you take good care of your mouth. At Raptou Family Dental, we can help you to protect vulnerable areas of your teeth with sealants.
How Do I Get Cavities?
Cavities are small pits that form on your teeth as a result of tooth decay. Tooth decay is caused by erosion, which is caused by the acids produced by plaque and oral bacteria. When these acids are left to sit on the surfaces of the teeth, they begin to eat away at the protective enamel layer of your teeth, causing it to weaken or decay. Eventually, this gives way to cavities. Untreated, cavities only continue to grow in size. As they grow larger, they can compromise the strength of your teeth and leave them at risk for infections.
What Are Sealants?
Sealants are a treatment designed to provide the chewing surfaces of your molars with additional protection against the formation of tooth decay and cavities. Made up of plastic, sealants are applied directly over the crevices on your molars, sealing them from potential bacteria and food debris. Along with preventing buildup, sealants also make your teeth easier to maintain.
I Thought Sealants Were Only for Kids
Sealants are a common treatment for kids, on both baby teeth and adult teeth. This is because kids are more likely to have a harder time maintaining good oral hygiene, leaving them more susceptible to cavities. However, while sealants are common for kids, they can be used to provide additional protection for anyone, no matter what your age.
Applying Your Sealants
The process for getting sealants is quick, easy, and completely painless. Before beginning treatment, we first treat any existing cavities. The crevices of your molars are thoroughly cleaned, eliminating all buildup. Next, an acid etch is applied to the teeth. This is done to create a rough surface on your molars, which creates a stronger bond between the sealants and your teeth. The acid is washed away, and your teeth are dried. Finally, the sealant material is applied to your teeth and cured using a special light. Once cured, or dried, they begin providing you with immediate protection.
Protecting Your Teeth From Decay and Cavities
Even though sealants are made of plastic, they are still fairly strong, and they can stand up to a significant amount of daily wear and tear. Moreover, while they protect the chewing surfaces of your teeth, they are not a substitute for oral hygiene. They are an added protection that only protects the areas where they are applied. Cavities can still develop on other surfaces of the teeth, including around the border of the sealants. It is still important to brush and floss regularly to provide the best protection for your teeth.
With sealants, we can help you to further protect your teeth from the development of tooth decay and cavities. Call Raptou Family Dental today to schedule your appointment and find out if sealants are right for you at (614) 427-0449.