Dr. Holly Austgen, DDS of Southeast Family Dental in Indianapolis, Indiana explains what dental sealants are and why your dentist might want to apply them.

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Hy name is Dr. Holly Austgen and today we’re going to talk about dental sealants. So what are dental sealants? Sealants are a plastic material that is placed on the back teeth, usually the molars and the pre-molars. It’s placed there to prevent cavities. These teeth have large pits and grooves that tend to catch plaque that cause tooth decay. A sealant is a barrier that is placed there to prevent that cavity.

So how are sealants applied? They’re easily applied by your dental professional and they only take a few minutes per tooth. The tooth itself is cleaned and polished. Then the tooth is conditioned and a disinfectant is placed within those deep grooves. Then a bonding material is placed on the tooth as well as the sealant. It’s kind of painted in those deep grooves and the light is used to cure and make that material harder.

So how long do sealants last? It’s really hard to say. Most sealants can last several years. You may have some breakdown within the first five years. That’s why it’s important to see your dentist to have them checked regularly. The dental team can re-apply them and touch them up to prevent any decay from occurring underneath those sealants.

Here at Southeast Family Dental we can make you smile.