What Brushing and Flossing Methods Protect Sealants Best?

What Brushing and Flossing Methods Protect Sealants Best?

March 1, 2024

Dental sealants provide an extra defense against tooth decay for children and adults. However, maintaining proper oral hygiene is still essential for keeping sealants intact. Use the right brushing, flossing, and cleaning techniques to get the longest-lasting benefits from your dental sealants. Here are some best practices to follow at home.

What’s the proper technique for brushing teeth with sealants?

The American Dental Association advocates the use of gentle toothbrushes and advocates brushing for two minutes, twice each day. This thorough brushing routine is even more critical when you have dental sealants in Pocahontas, IA, from your dentist.

Angle the bristles toward your gums at a 45-degree angle. Gently brush each surface of every tooth using short, circular motions. Take care when brushing over your sealed molars – don’t scrub aggressively. Let the soft bristles glide over the sealants to remove plaque and debris. Hit all areas, including behind molars and around fillings.

Finish by brushing your tongue to freshen your breath. Rinsing with water or an ADA-approved mouthwash removes any lingering plaque. You brush properly after meals and before bed, keeping sealants plaque-free.

Should you use a soft or medium bristle toothbrush with sealants?

Dentists recommend using a soft-bristled toothbrush when you have any dental work, like sealants or braces. Soft bristles are gentle enough to remove plaque without being overly abrasive on sealant material or tooth enamel.

Medium and hard bristles can wear down sealants over time. They also irritate gums and other oral tissues. Visit your dentist’s office near me regularly so they can examine bristles for signs of fraying. It’s advisable to change your toothbrush quarterly or even sooner should the bristles fray.

What kind of toothpaste works best with dental sealants?

Fluoridated toothpaste strengthens enamel under dental sealants and around the teeth. Look for the ADA Seal of Acceptance on toothpaste packaging. This indicates the formula is proven to prevent cavities and gum disease.

Avoid whitening toothpastes, which can be too abrasive on dental work. Children ages 3 and up should use only a pea-sized amount. Teaching kids to rinse thoroughly prevents them from swallowing too much fluoride paste.

When should you avoid high-pressure water picks with sealants?

Water picks can dislodge dental sealants if the pressure is too high. Discuss settings with your emergency dentist near me before using one. Some general guidelines include:

  • Avoid water pick entirely for 1 week after getting new sealants.
  • Start on the lowest setting and cautiously increase pressure.
  • Concentrate the water stream on teeth, not sealed surfaces.
  • Never point stream directly at gums, which can tear tissue.

Your dentist may recommend avoiding water picks altogether if sealants are still new. Manual flossing is gentler on sealed molars.

How should you floss between teeth with dental sealants?

Flossing daily is critical for removing plaque between teeth that brushing misses. But take care when flossing around sealants. Avoid snapping floss up quickly, which can loosen sealant edges.

Gently ease the floss between contact points, curving it around the shape of each tooth. Floss up and down 3-4 times per space with light pressure. Use floss threaders if you have trouble fitting floss between tightly spaced molars.

Rinse away any dislodged plaque after flossing. Check the mirror to ensure sealants still look fully adhered with no gaps or chips. Report any concerns to your dentist in Pocahontas.

What regular cleaning routine keeps sealants intact longest?

Your dentist 50574 applies dental sealants, but keeping them intact relies on your oral hygiene. Stick to a routine of brushing twice daily and flossing once daily. Regular dental visits suggested every six months, are essential for professional cleanings and to inspect the condition of sealants.

Sidestep foods that are hard, sticky, or crunchy to avoid damaging sealants. Refrain from gnawing on items like ice, writing tools, or fingernails. Sporting a mouthguard during physical activities can shield against harm. Promptly report any issues with sealants to ensure timely repair.

Diligent care at home paired with consistent dental checkups can extend the life of dental sealants, offering a decade or so of defense against tooth decay. Maintain your oral health routine to benefit from these preventive treatments. Contact Pocahontas Dental Associates today to schedule your next checkup and sealant evaluation!