Tooth Sealants Protect your teeth from decay - for years Tooth decay and cavities are most prevalent in the grooves of your teeth and a tooth sealant is an excellent way to help maintain the health of your mouth. Although a daily at-home regiment of brushing and flossing certainly aids in the removal of food particles and plaque from the smooth surfaces of your teeth, those little nooks and crannies at the back of your mouth aren't always easily accessible. Tooth sealants guard and protect these exposed areas from tooth decay by "sealing out" food and plaque. What exactly is a tooth sealant? A dental sealant is a thin, plastic coating painted on the chewing surfaces of teeth, primarily to molars, premolars and any deep grooves (called pits and fissures). Over 75% of decay starts forming in these deep grooves. Teeth affected with these pits and fissures are hard to clean and are very prone to decay. A tooth sealant protects your tooth by sealing over these deep grooves, which creates a smooth and easy to clean surface. Who should consider tooth sealants? The probability of decay developing in the grooves and pits of molars and premolars is higher in children and teenagers. For that reason alone, they are excellent candidates for sealants. Generally, children should get sealants on their permanent teeth as soon as they come in. If they do, the tooth sealant can protect their teeth through the cavity-prone years of ages 6 to 14. The advantage of tooth sealants are not just for children. Adults who show no signs of decay or fillings in their molars can also benefit from tooth sealants. It also may be beneficial for tooth sealants to be applied to baby teeth. Because baby teeth have deep grooves and depressions and early teeth play such a pivotal role in developing permanent teeth, it's important to keep baby teeth healthy and vibrant as well. Age recommendations CHILDREN AND TEENAGERSAs soon as the six-year molars (the first permanent back teeth) appear or any time throughout the cavity prone years of 6-16. ADULTSTooth surfaces without decay that have deep grooves or depressions. BABY TEETHOccasionally done if teeth have deep grooves or depressions and child is cavity prone. How are sealants applied? Applying a tooth sealant is simple, painless procedure done by Dr. Khullar. It only takes a couple minutes for the Dentalways team to apply tooth sealant to each tooth. The application involves: First the teeth that are to be sealed are thoroughly cleaned.Each tooth is then dried and cotton or another absorbent material is put around the tooth to keep it dry.An acid solution is put on the chewing surfaces of the teeth to roughen them up, which helps the sealant bond to the teeth.The teeth are then rinsed and dried.Sealant is then painted onto the tooth enamel, where it bonds directly to the tooth and hardens. Sometimes a special curing light is used to help the sealant harden.Protect your teeth for years to come - it's so simple Tooth sealants can protect teeth from decay for up to 10 years, but they are also prone to chipping and regular wear and tear so they need to be examined at each check-up. Dentalways can simply and easily replace sealants as necessary.