Am I Too Old for Dental Sealants?

Am I Too Old for Dental Sealants?

Cavities can strike anyone at any age. To prevent cavities in adults, dentists treat them with sealants — plastic coatings that have long prevented kids' cavities. Sealants are effective for children, teens, and adults.


What Are Dental Sealants?


The most common way to prevent decay in the back teeth is to apply dental sealants — coatings that are applied in liquid form. Deep grooves do not need sealing, but small ones do since a toothbrush cannot reach these places. Sealants bond to the smallest grooves in the molars, forming a hard protective shield over the enamel when they dry. As a result, food is kept out of the grooves, preventing the growth of bacteria. The sealant also forms a smooth surface that is easy to clean.


Who Needs a Dental Sealant?


Children and young adults often use dental sealants, but older adults can also benefit from them. However, only adults who do not already have decay or fillings in their molars can use sealants. Sealants prevent tooth decay regardless of age by preventing food and plaque from accumulating in grooves and depressions of the tooth.


Ask your dentist whether a sealant might be beneficial for you if you have cavities in more than one tooth or if you have a history of tooth decay. If you wish to ensure good oral health, you should visit your dentist regularly for professional cleaning and examination. Most sealants last several years before they need to be reapplied.


How Are Dental Sealants Applied?


Your dentist will professionally scale your teeth for an easy and effective dental cleaning. Before applying mild acid gel to mark the surface of the enamel, the teeth might also be polished. The sealant is then brushed or painted on after the acid is rinsed off and dried. In most cases, the sealant is applied to the chewing surface and then hardened with ultraviolet light. It takes only about 30 seconds to complete this step. As a result, you have a thin, plastic-like coating over your teeth, similar to that of a raincoat.


Benefits of Dental Sealants


Dentists recommend dental sealants for a variety of reasons. Some of the benefits of sealants are listed below.


  • Adults and children with dental sealants enjoy a reduced risk for tooth decay

  • Dental sealants ensure that bacteria cannot breed in the mouth

  • Dental sealants prevent food debris from accumulating in sensitive areas, making them an excellent preventive measure for tooth decay

  • Although you may need to spend a little money at first, the sealant prevents you from having to spend a lot in the future on dental procedures after you have had tooth decay

  • Dental sealants can reduce the risk of tooth decay by up to 80 percent in hard-to-reach molars

  • This protective measure is particularly useful in children, as they tend to neglect to brush their teeth due to lack of attention and patience


A dental sealant is one of the best ways to protect your teeth. It will help you improve your smile in the long run and boost your self-confidence. Our dentists at Castro Valley Dentistry in Castro Valley, California, can assist with maintaining your oral health. To schedule an appointment, please call (510) 674-0900.

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