How Do Dental Sealants Work?
Dental sealants are incredibly important for young children whose teeth are growing in. According to Dr. Nannette Benedict, D.D.S., a dentist in Santa Cruz, California, dental sealants are an excellent way to protect newly formed teeth, which are often considered the most vulnerable to decay.
As a dentist in Santa Cruz, Dr. Benedict goes on to explain exactly how these dental sealants work. She says that teeth that are still forming are very prone to cavities and decay – especially inside the deep grooves. It can be very difficult for a patient to get a toothbrush deep inside these grooves to clean them out – even a toothbrush with tiny bristles. However, the plaque and tartar that can build up within these grooves has to be addressed. If not, serious instances of cavities and decay can result.
So what is the answer, and how is a young person supposed to clean the deepest grooves in his teeth if toothbrush bristles can’t fit inside? The answer, says Dr. Benedict, is to get dental sealants.
Dental sealants protect the little groves on the insides and tops of vulnerable teeth. While the tooth continues with its formation and it finishes growing in, it receives fluoride treatments and it becomes stronger over time. The sealant itself protects the tooth so plaque is not able to build up inside the grooves and decay does not occur for at least the first five years after the sealant has gone on.
The Santa Cruz dentist says that dental sealants are put on teeth in a way that is very non-invasive. The process itself involves cleaning off the surface of the patient’s teeth using a special technique, and then flowing some resin into the grooves. The resin is then cured with light, and the sealing process is through.
Dr. Benedict says that most dentists would like to think that dental sealants should last for about five years. After those five years are through, most patients do not need to get additional sealants – known as re-sealing – because the teeth are usually completely formed by that time. Once the teeth are fully formed, they are considered much stronger and less vulnerable to cavities or decay.
For more information on dental sealants, Dr. Benedict recommends contacting her office and scheduling a consultation appointment. The Santa Cruz dentist enjoys working with pediatric patients and believes that it is important to educate her patients and their parents on the best ways to avoid dental caries during those formative childhood years.
Scotts Valley, CA 95066
*Disclaimer: The information on this website is not intended to substitute for the medical expertise and advice of your healthcare provider. We encourage you to discuss any decisions about treatment or care with an appropriate healthcare provider.