Dental sealants are thin protective coatings applied to the chewing surfaces of teeth to help prevent tooth decay. Dentists often recommend sealants as preventative measures when children and teenagers' permanent molars begin coming in; their deep grooves and pits make these teeth particularly susceptible to cavities, providing the perfect environment for bacteria growth.
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Sealants can be beneficial to children and teenagers who do not follow proper oral hygiene practices or have experienced dental decay in the past, as well as adults with deep grooves or pits in their molars. However, sealants may also provide benefits to adults with deep grooves in their molars.
Sealants can last up to 10 years with proper care and maintenance, provided they're installed by an expert dentist. Brushing, flossing, and visiting your dentist on a regular basis are crucial to prolonging their lifespan and extending their life expectancy.
To apply a dental sealant, your dentist will first clean and dry the teeth that will receive sealants before isolating them with cotton or another absorbent material to keep them from becoming wet during the procedure. Next, they may apply an acidic solution that will help the sealant adhere better with tooth surfaces before rinsing off and drying it off; finally, the sealing material is applied directly onto grooves and pits of teeth using special curing lights to harden it and create a protective barrier on them.
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