What Are Dental Sealants & How Long Do They Last?

dental sealants

What Are Dental Sealants & How Long Do They Last?

Dental sealants are a helpful addition to any mouth. They protect our vulnerable molars against further bacterial invasion. They’re sturdy, efficient, cost-effective, and easy to apply. But what exactly are dental sealants? Read on for a full explanation about dental sealants: what they are, how long they last, and more.

What Are Dental Sealants?

Often referred to as “raincoats” for teeth, dental sealants shield your teeth from harmful bacteria. When you eat, food particles leave an acidic residue—plaque—which causes decay. But sealants shield your enamel from bacteria, thus reducing decay. 

How Do They Work?

Sealants are made of resin, which adheres to a tooth. The resin keeps plaque from eating away at the enamel, or protective layer of the tooth. 

Sealants are specifically made for molars, or back teeth. Molars do most of the chewing when we eat, making them more vulnerable to decay.

When Are They Needed?

Anyone can benefit from sealants. There is no particular condition that warrants the installation of sealants; rather, think of them as a preventative measure. 

Many parents choose to have their children set up with sealants at a young age. In fact, we advocate having them installed when six-year molars appear. After all, kids love sugar, and are prone to developing lots of plaque. That’s why sealants have helped so many of our younger patients maintain great dental health. 

How Are They Applied?

As far as dental procedures are concerned, applying dental sealant is quite simple. After cleaning a tooth, the dentist applies a gel in a process known as acid etching. The gel creates a bond between the resin material and the tooth. The dentist washes the gel off and dries the tooth before attaching the sealant. It’s painless and quick. And even better, the whole procedure is done in just one day!

How Long Do Dental Sealants Last? 

One of the many advantages of dental sealants is their durability. They can last several years before needing to be replaced. And when the time for replacement comes, they are easily replaced. 

What Do I Do If My Dental Sealant is Coming Off?

If one of your sealants falls off, don’t worry! This happens from time to time, and they’re easily re-installed. Give us a call if one of your sealants becomes loose. Otherwise, we will make sure your sealants are well-applied during every exam.

Are Dental Sealants a Worthy Investment?

Sealants are affordable, usually never exceeding $60 per tooth. In addition, many insurances will help cover the cost. Their cost-effectiveness, combined with their efficiency and durability, makes them a great investment.

Family Dentist in Prescott

At Hicks Dental Group, we’ve been installing dental sealants for over 40 years. We’ve seen all the benefits they have provided mouths of all ages. If you have any more questions about sealants, we’d be happy to go over them at your next appointment.

Image by John Oliver on Pixabay.