What are fissure sealants?
Fissure sealants are a type of preventive restoration. They’re used in teeth that have deep grooves that are vulnerable to decay. They block the grooves, or fissures, and stop food and bacteria from getting trapped in this deep groove and causing decay. Fissure sealants prevent painful decay, toothaches and larger dental issues down the track.
What makes a tooth groove vulnerable to decay?
The vulnerability lies in the anatomy of the grooves – you’re either born with deep grooves in your molars or not. Dentists can recognise these deep grooves, as we’ll often see early signs of them being at risk of decay.
These deep grooves are often so vulnerable to decay that even excellent brushing and dental hygiene practices won’t prevent a cavity from forming.
What do we use for fissure sealants?
Fissure sealants use a runnier version of the same type of material we use to do tooth-coloured fillings. For fissure sealants, we use a lot less than when we do a filling.
Are fissure sealants common?
Not everyone needs to have fissure sealants as they may not have the deep tooth grooves that are susceptible to plaque and decay. However, many of the people that we recommend them for, do choose to have them as a preventive measure, rather than choosing the ‘wait and see’ option.
How long do fissure sealants last?
Just like any filling or other dental restoration, fissure sealants don’t last forever. They do experience inevitable wear and tear over time, so the lifetime is different for each person.
With average wear and tear, someone might only need a top-up and maintenance every 10 years.
If I have fissure sealants, do I still need dental check-ups?
Yes. Fissure sealants won’t cover all of the areas of teeth that are susceptible to decay, so regular dental check-ups are still recommended to maintain ongoing dental health. Bacteria will always attempt to get in underneath your fissure sealants over time, so it’s important that we regularly check your sealants and teeth.
Fissure Sealants – Shepherds Hill Dental
If you think that you or your children might benefit from fissure sealants, or are curious about whether your molars fall into this high-risk category, please call us on 08 8278 6858 to book your consultation.