Using dental sealants is a popular and effective way to help prevent tooth decay. Placing dental sealants on the teeth is a process which involves the dentist bonding a plastic coating directly into the grooves of each tooth. This results in a smoother tooth surface which is less likely to trap food and plaque, both of which can lead to tooth decay.
Tooth decay is primarily caused by bacteria found in plaque. Plaque is the white film which forms on the tooth and the longer it remains there, the greater the chance of developing tooth decay. While brushing with a toothbrush is an effective method of removing plaque, some teeth are harder to clean than others. For example, the back molars are more difficult to reach with a toothbrush which makes it harder to remove plaque. If plaque is left on these teeth, there is an increased risk for decay.