The grooves and depressions that form the chewing surfaces of the back teeth are extremely difficult (if not impossible) to clean of bacteria and food. As the bacteria react with the food, acids form and break down the tooth enamel causing cavities.
Tooth sealants are plastic coatings that protect these susceptible areas by sealing the grooves and depressions, preventing bacteria and food particles from residing in these areas. The sealant material is a resin typically applied to the back teeth and areas prone to cavities. Sealants last for several years but need to be checked during regular appointments.
Placing sealants is a painless procedure. No anesthetic is typically needed for this treatment. Once the sealant is placed it is usable immediately after the procedure. There is no need to wait to eat or drink after the procedure.