An Extra Level of Plaque Prevention: What is a Fissure Sealant?

11 April,2019

An Extra Level of Plaque Prevention: What is a Fissure Sealant?

Brushing and flossing is the best way to fight plaque and prevent tartar build up, but what happens if the ridges of your teeth may be too deep for the standard toothbrush to reach? One of the most common areas for tooth decay is on the chewing surfaces of your back molars. On your back teeth you’ll find grooves and ridges which help grind your food so you can easily swallow it, but sometimes it can be harder to remove food residue and plaque with a standard toothbrush.

If your dentist has found that the grooves of your teeth are too deep for you to keep clean with your regular dental routine, they might recommend dental sealants.

Why fissure sealants?

Sealants are proven to be an effective way to prevent tooth decay and have been used by dentists for several decades. Sealants hold up incredibly well against everyday chewing and last for several years and proven to be a great way to fight plaque in hard to clean places.

What are sealants made of?

Sealants consist of a plastic material that is placed on the chewing surface of your tooth.

What to expect during a sealant procedure

A sealant procedure is a non-invasive and usually painless procedure that doesn’t require any drilling or numbing medications and will be completed in a handful of easy steps:

  1. First, the tooth will be polished to remove any food residue or plaque from the fissures
  2. The dental therapist will then isolate the dry tooth so it doesn’t get covered in saliva, and the surface and fissures of the tooth will be etched
  3. The etching material is then rinsed off and the tooth will then be dried
  4. The sealant is then pressed to the surface of the tooth with a brush. A self-curing light is used for roughly 30 seconds to bond the sealant to the tooth
  5. Your dentist will check to see that the sealant has hardened against the tooth

 Fissure sealants are a safe and painless way to help protect your teeth from tooth decay. If you’d like to discuss how sealants can help you or your children in the fight against plaque and tooth decay, please contact the team at Dental on Clarendon.