Dental Sealants in Vienna
Tooth decay is a common problem for those who do not practice proper dental hygiene or have other predetermined risk factors. Children are the most frequent victims of tooth decay. They love sweets, often don’t brush properly, and do not usually understand the importance of dental health. However, adults also suffer from dental decay and unfortunately what starts out as a small cavity could become a serious problem. This is why prevention is key, and luckily, there is an easy treatment available to help prevent tooth decay at all ages. Dental sealants and fluoride therapy protect the enamel against the effects of harmful bacteria in the mouth. If you are interested in dental sealants, call Dr. Gary Ellenbogen today at (703) 734-1095 for a consultation and evaluation.
Dental Sealants at a Glance
Dentists primarily use dental sealants for protection. They are a coating of thin plastic the dentist places on the biting surfaces of the teeth. These surfaces contain pits, fissures, and deep grooves where bacteria and food particles often hide but are almost impossible to clean out with a toothbrush completely. When left alone, these particles and bacteria cause decay. This is why the dentist usually treats molars and premolars with sealants. They have the deepest fissures and are located deeper within the mouth where food particles are easily trapped. Patients often do not clean these teeth as efficiently as their front teeth and sealants can help prevent the risk of dental decay.
Dental Sealants for Kids
The prime time to receive sealants is during the adolescent years when children and teens are at a higher risk of developing cavities. A child should get dental sealants as soon as the permanent molars grow in. This can be as early as six years old and is why these teeth are often called the “6-year-old molars.” Dr. Ellenbogen also applies sealants to other adult molars and premolars as they come in. He can apply sealants on baby teeth to ensure they are not lost too early. Baby teeth maintain space for permanent teeth and when lost too soon could lead to a number of other problems.
Dental Sealants for Adults
Sealants are ideal for children, but adults can receive them as well. They are best for teeth that do not have any major damage. If you already have cavities, fillings, or fractures caused by wear or trauma, Dr. Ellenbogen will likely prescribe other treatment based on the severity of your condition.
Dental Sealants Procedure
Before the dentist places sealants, he cleans the surface of the tooth using a special paste and a rotating brush. This eliminates plaque and afterwards, he completely rinses and dries the teeth. Then he uses an acidic formula to etch each tooth. This is important because the surface needs to be rough so the sealant can better adhere to the enamel. Then, he will dry the teeth again and apply the liquid sealant to the fissures of each tooth. Finally, he uses a special light to dry and harden the sealant. The full procedure only takes one appointment which generally lasts about 45 minutes and does not require sedation.
The Benefits of Dental Sealants
Here are the top three reasons you should consider dental sealants, if you haven’t yet. They:
- Ensure longevity of teeth. With sealants preventing bacteria from entering fissures in the teeth, the enamel remains healthy and free from decay for up to 10 years. The dentist can repair or replace sealants if needed.
- Provide lower-cost dental care. Preventing tooth decay ultimately leads to huge savings in overall dental care. Compared to fillings, root canal therapy, inlays, onlays, and dental crowns. Sealants are a far more affordable option. Also, most insurance policies cover the costs of dental sealants cutting costs in that way as well.
- Offer security and peace of mind. Dental sealants reduce the risk of children needing tooth extractions, root canals, or crown placements in the future as a result of tooth decay. These treatments are more invasive and unnecessary as long as you work with the dentist to make preventative care one of your top priorities.
Choosing Our Dental Practice for Preventative Care
While dental sealants provide a fantastic barrier against the damage of decay, proper dental hygiene, such as tooth brushing and flossing, are necessary to keep teeth healthy and beautiful. If you want to maintain preventative care you should visit the dentist every six months for a checkup, professional cleanings, and talk to the dentist about fluoride therapy. These efforts will be well worth your time and can save you money in the long run.
Dr. Ellenbogen is a highly skilled and trained dentist who can apply dental sealants and other preventative treatments to patients of all ages. For additional information including cost of dental sealants, or to schedule an appointment, call our clinic anytime at (703) 734-1095.