Sealants are a very thin coating painted on the chewing surfaces of the teeth – generally the premolars and molars. The liquid sealant bonds into the depressions and grooves of the teeth to form a shield over the enamel of each tooth.
While brushing and flossing remove food and plaque from the surfaces of teeth, they can’t get into all the nooks and crannies to fully remove all food particles. Sealants protect these areas from tooth decay by sealing out plaque and food.
Teenagers and children are the best candidates for sealants since they have a higher likelihood of developing decay in the depressions and grooves of the premolars and molars. It is advised that children receive sealants on their permanent molars and premolars right when the teeth come in. In rare cases, dental sealants may be appropriate for baby teeth, such as a child with deep depressions and grooves in the teeth.
Sealants typically last up to 10 years but need to be checked for chipping during regular dental check-ups. Decay can sometimes get under a sealant that is beginning to wear out. At Lindner Dental, we can diagnose and find these areas with the help of dental X-rays. A new sealant or a small filling may be necessary before the problem progresses. Give us a call today for infant dental care, orthodontics and general dentistry in New Hampshire.