Our dentist and team at Aurora Hills Dental place a strong emphasis on preventive dentistry — because preventing problems from occurring in the first place is the most effective way to maintain healthy teeth for life! In addition to prophylactic cleanings, one of the best preventive dentistry treatments available is dental sealants.
What Are Dental Sealants?
Dental sealants are made of a thin layer of composite resin that’s painted onto the surface of a patient’s molars.
Do Dental Sealants Really Work?
Yes, dental sealants are incredibly effective at protecting the teeth. They work in two ways:
First, dental sealants act as a shield on the chewing surface of the molars, protecting the underlying tooth enamel from the bacteria and tooth decay that lead to dental caries (cavities).
Second, dental sealants smooth out the molars’ chewing surfaces that are normally filled with grooves and crevices where food can easily become lodged and that are difficult to clean effectively. By creating a smoother chewing surface, food, plaque, and bacteria are less likely to accumulate on the teeth, helping to prevent tooth decay.
How Long Do Dental Sealants Last?
On average, dental sealants last for about 10 years. Over that time, they can wear down or become chipped. However, Dr. Zalesky checks them during every dental exam, testing their strength, condition, and integrity. If needed, we can touch them up to ensure the continued protection of your molars.
Who Should Get Dental Sealants?
Everyone can benefit from the protection that dental sealants offer. Many people think of dental sealants as a preventive treatment for children.
While we do recommend dental sealants for children — especially as their permanent molars erupt — we also strongly recommend them for protecting our adult patients’ teeth, too.
What To Expect When Getting Dental Sealants
Dental sealants are non-invasive, pain-free, and quick and easy to apply, so we usually give patients their dental sealants at the end of their regular dental exams and cleanings.
Dental sealants need to be applied to a clean, dry tooth surface, so cleaning and drying your molars is the first step.
We then use a small brush to apply the dental sealant to the tooth. A thin layer of composite resin is “painted” onto each molar’s surface. Next, we use a special light to cure the resin so that it sets and hardens quickly.
Finally, we ask you to bite your teeth together and tell us how the dental sealants feel. We then polish the sealants until your bite feels normal — and you’re all set.
Complete Preventive Dentistry at Aurora Hills Dental
We’re proud to provide our patients with a comprehensive list of preventive and general dentistry treatments in our Aurora dental office.
To learn more about dental sealants and the professional fluoride treatments available at Aurora Hills Dental or to schedule your next dental exam, we welcome you to contact our office today.