To seal or not to seal, that is the question.
A sealant is a strong, plastic, clear or tooth-coloured coating applied to the deep pits and grooves on the chewing surfaces of cavity-free molars. These grooves are difficult to keep clean because the bristles of a toothbrush cannot effectively reach into them.
Sealants act as a barrier, protecting the enamel from bacterial plaque in these cavity prone areas.
Application of sealants should be made as soon as possible after eruption of these molars, usually around ages 6 and 12.
Sealant material is easily applied: the tooth is cleaned; the sealant is painted on, then allowed to harden. It is durable and can last many years. If a sealant is damaged or lost, it is easily replaced. Sealants are easy, cost-effective and offer great prevention.
Written by Lee Ann Zorzit, Registered Dental Hygienist