The pits and grooves of your teeth are prime areas for opportunistic decay. Even regular brushing sometimes misses some of these intricate structures on the chewing surfaces of your teeth.
Enter sealants, which are thin coatings applied to the chewing surfaces designed to prevent the intrusion of bacteria and other debris into the deep crevices on the tops of your teeth.
Sealants actually were developed about 50 years ago, but didn't become commonly used until the 1970s. Today, sealants are becoming widely popular and effective; young children are great candidates for preventative measures like sealants because in many cases, decay has not set in. Even on teeth where decay is present, sealants have been shown to fight additional damage.
Sealants are applied by first cleaning the tooth surface. The procedure is followed by etching the tooth with an abrasive substance, which allows the sealant to better adhere. After the sealant is applied, a warm light source is directed to the site to promote faster drying. Sealants usually need re-application every five to 10 years.
Why should I get dental sealants?
Prevention is the best type of treatment. Dental sealants prevent food and bacteria from getting into the little nooks and crannies of your teeth.
The back molars are particularly susceptible to decay since they tend to be rougher with more grooves and dips for breaking food down. These grooves and crevices can be very difficult to clean.
Children with teeth that have no decay are great candidates for dental sealants. Adults may also have sealants applied to teeth that are free of decay.
Dr. Zelikow has applied sealants to many patients from Chicago, Lincolnwood, Elmwood Park, Evanston, and surrounding areas. He knows just what to look for to determine if sealants are a good idea for you.
How do I take care of dental sealants?
After you have had dental sealants applied you should continue with good oral care.
Regular checkups are very important so the dentist can make sure the sealants are holding up properly. The dentist will check the dental sealants during every visit to determine if they need to be reapplied.
According to the ADA, even though your dental sealants are providing your teeth with some more protection, you still need to brush your teeth for two minutes two times a day. The ADA further suggests that you floss once a day to help remove sticky plaque and bacteria that can lead to tooth decay between your teeth.
Give the office of Dr. Zelikow a call at (773) 348-3309 to hear more about how dental sealants can protect your teeth.
When you’re ready to come in for a visit, you’ll find that his office is easy to get to in Chicago, IL.
In need of immediate care?
Dr. Zelikow provides emergency phone consultation services after working hours and on weekends. Call (773) 348-3309