Fissure sealants

Fissure Sealants Crows Nest

Fissure Sealants at Dental On Clarke, Crows Nest

We all have naturally-occurring grooves (fissures) in our back teeth; it’s just normal tooth anatomy. The points (cusps) and grooves (fissures) on our teeth are what allow us to chew our food so well. Unfortunately, though, sometimes the fissures on our teeth are so deep and narrow that they trap dental plaque, which cannot be effectively cleaned out by a toothbrush. That’s where fissure sealants can help to protect your teeth from that plaque sticking around.

Dental plaque is made up of bacteria and a gel-like substance that helps the bacteria to stick to the teeth. Plaque bacteria convert sugars from your food into powerful acids which, over time, begin to attack and dissolve the tooth structure. If plaque stays in the fissures of a tooth for long enough, the plaque acid damages the tooth enough that a cavity is formed.

What are fissure sealants?

Fissure sealants are a dental treatment which fills the deep areas of the tooth fissures, in order to keep dental plaque from ‘staying and playing’. Fissure sealants also work by making the surface of a tooth easier to keep clean, without compromising how well the tooth can participate in chewing.

How are fissure sealants placed on the teeth?

Prior to placing a fissure sealant on your tooth, your dentist will thoroughly clean the tooth to ensure any plaque has been completely removed from the area. Once this has been completed, they will apply a liquid dental filling material into the fissures which then bonds to the tooth and sets hard on its own, or with the aid of a special blue light. Different materials and techniques exist; your dentist will recommend the best options for your unique circumstances and needs.

Why should I get fissure sealants?

By reducing the risk of tooth decay on a tooth, fissure sealants help to avoid the need for tooth fillings and other dental problems later on. While nothing is ever able to provide 100% protection, and you will still need to attend regular check-up and cleans and carry out active maintenance, fissure sealants will certainly provide you with a level of protection against decay and cavities. Fissure sealants will need to be replaced periodically, but when placed under ideal conditions, they can last for many years.

Should I have fissure sealants placed on all my teeth?

Not all teeth require fissure sealants. The need for fissure sealants generally relates to how deep your teeth grooves are, how well you are cleaning your teeth at home, any previous tooth decay experience you might have had, and any medical or lifestyle factors that might increase your risk of tooth decay. Your dentist will be able to advise you if your teeth could benefit from this treatment.

Fissure sealants for children

Quite often fissure sealants are something which seems to be associated with children’s dentistry. It is true, they provide excellent protection for your child’s teeth; particularly their baby teeth, which are softer and more susceptible to decay than adult teeth. However, they are not only for children; they are also something which can be used effectively for adults.

Whilst fissure sealants are not a substitute for keeping up a good at-home oral health regimen, and six-monthly check-up and cleanings, they are certainly an excellent aid in lifetime good oral health. Talk to your dentist about whether fissure sealants could help you achieve better oral health, as well as other ways you can protect your teeth from tooth decay.

FAQs

Dental plaque is made of bacteria and a gel-like substance that helps the bacteria stick to the teeth. The bacteria in plaque converts sugars into acids, which gradually attack and dissolve the structure of the teeth. If plaque remains in the fissures of the teeth for too long, a cavity may form.

Fissure sealants are a dental treatment that is performed in order to fill the deep areas of the tooth fissures. Fissure sealants help to keep dental plaque from getting trapped in the teeth, and make the surface of the tooth easier to clean without affecting the chewing function.

Before a fissure sealant is placed on the tooth, your dentist will clean the tooth to remove any plaque, and then apply a liquid dental filling material into the fissures, which bonds to the teeth and sets.

Everyone can benefit from getting fissure sealants, as they reduce the risk of tooth decay and can help to avoid the need for tooth fillings at a later stage. They are suited for both adults and children — in fact, they provide excellent protection for your child’s teeth, especially baby teeth, which are softer and more susceptible to decay than adult teeth

If you would like to request a consultation with one of our friendly and knowledgeable dentists, contact us today.