No matter what your age, maintaining a healthy bright smile is very important. If you are a growing child or teenager, having a healthy white smile will give you additional self-confidence and help you deal with the growing pains those years so often involve. If you are just getting started in your career, having a beautiful smile can be a real asset to your professional life, helping you deal with social and workplace situations. As you age, having a bright white smile can enhance your self esteem and allow you to age more gracefully.
Whether you are a young teen, a professional in the midst of your career or an active senior citizen, sometimes you need a bit of help to keep your smile looking its best. Dental sealants provide that assistance, protecting your natural teeth and helping you maintain a youthful appearance no matter what your age.
Dental sealants are comprised of special materials which are able to bond with the tiny grooves in the chewing surface of your teeth. This bonding serves to protect your teeth and reduce the chances of tooth decay. You can think of the sealant as a super-strong barrier between the bacteria in your mouth and the underlying structure of your teeth.
Sealants are particularly effective for young children, who often have trouble cleaning their teeth effectively and reaching the tiny grooves where bacteria and food particles can hide out. By applying the sealant, the dentist can protect the child’s teeth from damage and provide a flatter and smoother surface that is easier to clean effectively. Dental sealants can also make plaque removal easier, since the surface to be cleaned is now flatter and more uniform.
Modern sealants are designed to be durable, and they are able to stand up to the normal rigors of eating, drinking and playing. The normal life expectancy of a properly applied dental sealant ranges from three to five years. Your dentist will check your child’s teeth during the life of the sealant to see how it is doing and make any necessary alterations. If the sealant needs to be reapplied, the dentist can help with that as well.
The process of applying the sealant is simple and straightforward, and it can be accomplished in a single visit. The dentist will begin by thoroughly cleaning and conditioning the tooth to be sealed. The tooth will then be completely dried and the sealant put in place. Once the sealant is in place a special blue light is applied to harden and bond it to the natural surface of the tooth. Once the seal is complete, your child can eat and drink normally and enjoy the protection of their new sealants immediately.