How Do You Get A Cavity Under A Sealant?

Your teeth are important, they allow you to chew food, help you formulate sounds and words, and perhaps most importantly, boost your confidence. Research shows that people with good teeth smile more and have increased levels of confidence.

Unfortunately, getting a perfect smile can be difficult as an increasing number of people suffer from cavities. That’s why it is essential to see a reputable Sydney Park dentist regularly to catch problems early and deal with them.

What Is A Cavity?

A cavity is simply a hole in your tooth. Teeth are coated in hard enamel which protects them from a variety of things and gives them their strength. However, every time you eat the bacteria in your mouth interact with the sugar and starch in the food. This produces acid which attacks the enamel on your teeth.

Brushing helps to eliminate this acid but, over time, the acid can eat through your enamel. Once it does this it can eat into the softer dentin inside your tooth.

At this stage, you have a cavity and it will need to be cleaned and filled to prevent it from getting worse.

If left it can develop into an abscess and even cause the loss of your tooth.

Understanding Sealant

Tooth sealant is a thin plastic coating. It is not used to treat cavities. However, many dentists will use it to coat teeth that they believe are at risk of forming cavities. You can see it as an extra coat of enamel, although not as strong as enamel.

It is often used when the enamel appears to be damaged or as a precautionary measure in people that suffer from a lot of cavities.

In effect, it provides an extra barrier to protect the tooth from harm. But, it must be applied by a professional. 

How Cavities Get Under Sealant

Before a sealant can be applied the tooth must be cleaned thoroughly and professionally. If it isn’t, there may be bacteria on the tooth which will become trapped between the sealant and the original tooth coating. This bacteria can then gradually eat into the tooth and cause cavities. The worst part is that they can go undetected for a long period of time as the sealant makes the tooth appear fine. You will only know there is an issue when you start experiencing pain and the decay has become severe.

Another option is when the sealant is applied properly and it creates a ledge. This gives food debris somewhere to sit and interact with bacteria. In effect, you make the tooth more of a target and the bacteria and food will create an acid that slips under the sealant ledge and starts to decay the tooth. Again, it can be a long time before you notice.

The damage caused can be severe, which is why it is so important that you see a dentist regularly and have any sealant completed by a professional. That’s better than dealing with extensive decay.