What are Dental Sealants?
Dental sealant is a thin, plastic coating painted on the chewing surfaces of teeth, usually the back teeth, to prevent tooth decay. The sealant quickly bonds into the depressions and grooves of the teeth, forming a protective shield over the enamel of each tooth. Although thorough brushing and flossing can remove food particles and plaque from smooth surfaces of teeth, they cannot always get into all the nooks and crannies of the back teeth to remove the food and plaque. Sealants protect these vulnerable areas from tooth decay by “sealing out” plaque and food.
How Do Sealants Work?
Think of them as raincoats for your teeth. When the cavity-causing bacteria that live in everyone’s mouth meet leftover food particles, they produce acids that can create holes in teeth. These holes are cavities. After sealant has been applied it keeps those bits of food out and stops bacteria and acid from settling on your teeth—just like a raincoat keeps you clean and dry during a storm.