In the preservation of oral health, dental experts have determined different strategies to use in dentistry. While quite a number of them fall under restorative dentistry to treat teeth, others are used proactively.
In preventive dentistry, dentists in Mesa employ oral materials and applications that help protect teeth. Ideally, you would never need to see an emergency dentist near you if you were consistent with preventive dental care. One of the oral materials common in preventive oral care is dental sealants.
What Are Dental Sealants?
They are oral materials used in preventive dentistry to preserve the health of teeth. Sealants feature a thin coat of a plastic-like material that is painted over the chewing surfaces of teeth. The sealants are a lot similar to dental fillings. However, these types of fillings are used as proactive dental measures, as opposed to restorative dental treatments.
How Do Sealants Work?
Teeth sealants are applied only to the back teeth, that is, premolars and molars. The application of the sealant is done only for the chewing surfaces, usually to seal the fissures and pits of the teeth thereof. This way, the sealant material acts as a barrier that prevents bacteria from attacking the enamel of teeth, which would lead to dental cavities and tooth decay.
Other than acting as a barrier, dental sealants do more to protect your teeth from cavities and tooth decay. They are packed with fluoride varnish, which is released gradually on your teeth while the sealants are in place. The fluoride thereof boosts the strength of your teeth and further helps protect your teeth from bacteria that cause infections.
Dental Sealants After Care Tips
Like with any other dental treatment that involves oral appliances and materials, maintenance after treatment is crucial. If you don’t take care of your appliances, then they deteriorate quicker than they should, reducing their efficiency thereof.
In the case of dental sealants, the care tips are similar to those of dental fillings. Although the sealants feature a hard plastic material, without proper care, they can chip and break, hence sabotaging your treatment.
The common care instructions for these types of tooth fillings include keeping up with proper oral hygiene and eating the right foods. On matters of foods, what you eat can affect how well the dental sealants service your teeth. Technically, right after your procedure, you are fit to eat. You do not have to wait. However, the foods you choose to eat should not be damaging to the sealant treatment.
Main Food Categories to Avoid After Getting Dental Sealants
One incredible benefit of tooth sealants is that they are not very limiting when it comes to food choices. For the most part, you should be able to eat everything you have been eating. You only need to make small adjustments when it comes to:
- Chewy and sticky foods – like chewing gum, toffee, caramel, and gummy bears. They get stuck on the surfaces of the sealant material, and can even pull it out over time.
- Hard foods – like ice cubes and jawbreakers. The hard foods can easily crack and break your sealants, creating a loophole for bacteria to sneak into the insides of your teeth.
- Sugary foods – for the sustenance of overall good oral health, you must limit the consumption of sugary foods.
Are They Worth It?
The bargain of getting dental sealants over your favorite piece of candies and food items should not be a tough call, particularly for adults. However, for kids, there is a need to help them understand whether or not it is worth having the tooth sealants in place. Some of the benefits thereof include the following:
- Prevent dental cavities – if you never get cavities, you may never experience the pain of dental decay and premature tooth loss.
- Improve oral hygiene – the deep fissures and puts of the back teeth can make it difficult to brush them properly. With sealants in place, the burden of reaching far into the pits of your molars and premolars is lifted.
- Prevent future dental treatments – invasive treatments like root canal therapy, tooth extractions, and even typical dental fillings can be avoided.