As cliche as it may sound, prevention is really better than cure especially when it comes to dental problems. It will not only save you from the pain and discomfort that comes with dental problems but will also save you some money. The truth is most dental problems could be avoided by taking preventive measures such as fissure sealants.
Now, this might be something that you’re already familiar with, but we want to help you know more about this effective and inexpensive preventive measure.
Fissure sealants are thin coatings that are applied to the deep pits and fissures of your teeth. They can be clear, white, or slightly tinted and are not seen when you speak or eat. They often come in different colours like pink or amber and become invisible once they are activated by light.
These are placed on the chewing surface of your teeth to cover the areas where plaque and bacteria often thrive and to produce a smooth surface that is easily cleanable. When these areas are sealed, we can protect the tooth from decay or dental caries.
According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), fissure sealants can prevent 80% of tooth decays over the first 2 years of application and up to 50% of tooth decays in the next 4 years.
Fissure sealants are placed on the chewing surfaces of your premolars and molars, also known as the posterior teeth. Note that not all teeth would require sealants.
Some factors to consider include tooth anatomy and the risk of tooth decay. For instance, teeth with shallow grooves are less likely to develop tooth decay than those with deep grooves so it may better to just monitor the tooth and place a sealant when necessary.
It is best to have your teeth examined by your dentist to know which teeth would benefit most from sealants.
Children and adults alike can benefit from applying fissure sealants. To receive optimal benefits, it is recommended to place sealants starting at around age 6 when the permanent first molar is expected to erupt in the oral cavity.
Applying fissure sealants is simple, pain-free, and will only take a few minutes per tooth.
The first step is teeth cleaning. We want to make sure that your teeth are free from food and plaque so that our sealant will have a better adaptation to your tooth surface. This is followed by placing a special gel to prepare your teeth.
After a few seconds, this gel is rinsed, and the tooth is dried. The sealant is then allowed to flow along pits and fissures and is hardened by using a special curing light.
Sealants remain effective for years after placement. However, they may fall off or wear from chewing and leave your teeth unprotected.
Your dentist will need to check them regularly to see if they are still intact or need to be replaced.
Here at Identity Dentistry, we aim to help you achieve a good oral health status by emphasizing the importance of preventive care. To talk more about your concerns, book an appointment with us today!
You may request an appointment with us in different ways. You may visit our website at https://www.identitydentistry.com.au or click the button below or you may also call us on 02 6248 5692.