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2233 North Hamline Ave.
Suite 320
Roseville, MN 55113
(651) 636-0655
  • An Update On COVID-19 From Personal Care Dentistry

    These past weeks have been challenging ones. We know like all of us, you are focused on keeping your families safe while balancing your daily life. COVID-19 has every one of us in protective mode.

    We have suspended all hygiene services and all non-emergency dental procedures until some time in May. We are taking these measures as part of our efforts to protect your health and the health of our employees, and based on advice from the Minnesota Board of Dentistry. We have been contacting patients who had hygiene dental visits scheduled before then to reschedule their appointments.

    However, we will be accepting dental emergencies. We will have a small dental care team available to help you if you’ve cracked or lost a tooth, if you have an infection, or a sudden onset of pain in your gums or mouth. We are seeing emergency patients on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, we are seeing emergency patients from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. To schedule an emergency appointment, please call our office between 7:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at (651) 636-0655 and we will work to get you scheduled for an appointment. We WILL NOT be accepting walk-in dental emergencies – you MUST CALL and make an appointment. In addition, one of our staff members will be monitoring a cell phone until 9 p.m. on weekdays and on the weekend for dental emergency calls after hours.

    Wishing you the best in the weeks ahead,

    Dr. Walter Hunt, Dr. Kyle Hunt, Dr. Andrew Heinisch and the team at Personal Care Dentistry

  • Tips to A Fresher Morning Breath

    Do you often wake up with breath that can clear a room? If you’re tired of bad breath in the morning – technically known as “halitosis” – we have six tips that can help you nip the problem in the (taste) buds!

    Reduce the caffeine.

    Caffeine inhibits the production of saliva, and saliva is the body’s natural method of cleaning your mouth. That means that caffeine-laden coffee, black teas, and energy drinks can dry out your mouth and allow oral bacteria to flourish. That leads to halitosis, since oral bacteria are the main culprit of bad breath. If you do need that jolt of caffeine in the morning, be sure to keep your mouth moist with lots of glasses of water to counteract the effects of the caffeine. 

    Quit the habit.

    Cigarettes are double trouble for your oral health. Not only do they stain your teeth, but they are purveyors of bad breath. The combination of chemical additives in the cigarette, along with the particles of smoke that stick to your throat and lungs, leaves your breath stale (and puts you at risk for lung cancer). Chewing tobacco is even worse for your breath. 

    Eat breakfast.

    Skip the cigarettes and caffeine – but be sure to sit down for a nutritious breakfast every morning. It doesn’t have to be complicated. An apple is great because of its water content and crunchiness. The combination helps eliminate bacteria that cause odors. Eggs or yogurt are also good choices because they boost the production of saliva and provide you with calcium and Vitamin D.

    Be more effective when you floss and brush.

    Even if time is tight in the morning, don’t rush your dental routine. Particles of food stuck in your mouth, gingivitis and oral bacteria can all contribute to bad breath and even more serious oral health issues. If you want to give yourself an even deeper cleaning than just brushing and flossing, you might add a tongue scraper to your morning routine along with gargling with a non-alcoholic mouthwash (alcohol dries out your mouth). And if you are really tight on time, be sure you have a travel toothbrush, tube of toothpaste, and floss at your workplace or in your car. 

    Pay attention to your sleeping habits.

    How you breath when you sleep could be a contributor to your bad breath in the morning. If you breathe through your mouth when you sleep, you’ll dry out your mouth and the lack of saliva will give halitosis-causing oral bacteria a boost. If your situation is severe, your dentist my recommend surgery. If it isn’t that severe, try having a glass of water, a throat lozenge, or a humidifier handy when you go to bed to keep your mouth moist and your breath fresh. 

    See your dentist.

    If you try the first five tips on our list and you’re still waking up with bad breath, then be sure to make an appointment to see your dentist. Your persistent morning halitosis may indicate that something more serious is going on with your oral health. It could be a cavity, an infection in a tooth, or gum issues. Or it could be something even more severe, such as liver or kidney issues or diabetes. Your dentist can see if the issue with your bad breath is due to a mouth issue or if it’s a more systemic problem. If it’s an oral health issue, they will be able to give you a personalized action plan to permanently get rid of the problem.

    SOURCES: American Dental Association, WebMD, Mayo Clinic

  • 10 Tips to Enhance Your Smile in 2020

    Improve Your Oral Health This Year with These Resolutions

    You might not be a fan of making New Year’s resolutions, but if you want a brighter smile and better oral health in 2020, we have 10 tips that are worth committing to in the next 12 months.

    Switch to a white-teeth diet.

    Woman smiling with a bright smile.

    A good rule to follow is if the food you are consuming is dark in color, then your goal of whiter teeth will suffer. Cigarettes and cigars are also culprits in staining teeth. If you can’t give up those dark foods and beverages, you can reduce their impact by brushing immediately after eating or drinking them. Also, consider an apple as a quick and convenient tooth cleaner. You can also try a tooth whitening program – either from the store or from your dentist’s office (which is the better choice since the results are superior).

    Toss your toothbrush

    Your toothbrush is a great collector of bacteria, so be sure to change it every 2-3 months. If you use an electric toothbrush, change the head on the same schedule.

    Use the right angle

    Your twice-a-day brushing routine will be much more effective if you hold your toothbrush at 45-degree-angle and gently move it in a circular motion against your gums. Avoid using a back-and-forth motion.

    Scrape your tongue

    Remove plaque on your tongue and freshen your breath by using a tongue scraper in the morning. Bacteria is a major culprit of foul breath, so using a tongue scraper will help you reduce or eliminate that problem. You can use your toothbrush to brush your tongue, but it isn’t as effective as a tongue scraper (which are available at most drug stores).

    Use foods to help clean your mouth

    Crisp and firm foods are wonderful natural teeth and gum cleaners. Apples, celery, raw carrots, and popcorn are super ways to clean your teeth. Try to eat them last, especially if you know you won’t be able to brush right after your meal.

    Try apple cider vinegar to gargle with

    Start your morning oral health routine by gargling with apple cider vinegar. Brush after you gargle. The apple cider vinegar is effective at killing bacteria and removing stains from your teeth.

    Use baking soda weekly

    A good way to remove stains on your teeth is to brush with baking soda once a week. Use it in place of toothpaste.

    Keep your breath fresh the right way

    If you use mouthwash to freshen your breath, make sure it’s alcohol free. Alcohol dries out the tissues in your mouth, which gives bacteria a better opportunity to damage your teeth. Wondering if your breath smells bad? Lick your palm and smell it to tell. It’s an effective (and a bit unusual) way to check. Just be sure to wash your hand afterwards!

    Close your eyes…and floss

    You know your flossing technique is good if you can floss effectively without looking in a mirror. That can be important to master because it will allow you to floss just about anywhere – your car (not while you’re driving, though), at the office, or sitting watching your favorite TV show.

    Develop an in-and-out of bed ritual

    Be sure to brush when you first get up and just before you go to bed. That’s because saliva (which keeps cavity-causing plaque off teeth) dries up at night, so it’s best to have all plaque cleaned off the teeth before sleep. It’s also important to brush first thing in the morning to brush off plaque and bacteria (morning breath!) that may have built up as you slept.

    SOURCE: WebMD and Stealth Health/Reader’s Digest

  • Healthy Halloween Snacks for Goblins and Ghouls

    Get rid of the empty calories and heavy doses of sugar this Halloween when you give out treats to the little ghouls and goblins who knock on your door. There are a wealth of sensible snacks and healthy alternatives available, ranging from sugarless chewing gum to string cheese to Goldfish crackers.  Or if you want to offer treats that more closely resemble traditional Halloween candy – but without the heavy doses of sugar – we have five options available for you. We’ve included the company websites in case you want to order directly from them to stock your Halloween treats bowl.

    UNREAL Candy

    Go-to Flavors: Dark Chocolate Coconut Bars, Dark Chocolate Crispy Peanut Butter Cups

    If you’re a sucker for the major players on Halloween (we’re talking Mounds bars, M&Ms, and Reese’s) but aren’t thrilled about artificial ingredients, UNREAL has got you covered. The company’s mission to reinvent our favorite candies with “only the good stuff” led to the creation of varieties identical in taste to their processed counterparts, but with only all-natural ingredients. With no GMOs, preservatives, or hydrogenated oils, these treats allow you to indulge your sweet tooth guilt-free.

    SkinnyPop Popcorn

    Go-to Flavors: Original, Sweet & Salty Kettle

    Are you a popcorn-ball lover? The holiday treat may be delicious, but it’s packed with salt and artificial flavorings that can give cholesterol levels a scare. Get your popcorn fix and hand out a unique Halloween treat – the healthy way by digging into a 100-calorie bag of SkinnyPop made with just three ingredients. The perfectly-portioned bags make for a convenient treat to pass out on Halloween night. Flavors range from Aged White Cheddar to Cinnamon and Sugar.

    KIND Bars

    Go-to Flavors: Dark Chocolate Cherry Cashew, Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate

    Many people reserve granola bars for on-the-go breakfasts or an afternoon pick-me-up, but with KIND’s assortment of decadent, dessert-flavored bars, they can be a smart way to satisfy a sweet tooth as well. At below 200 calories each, they easily have fewer calories than a candy bar, not to mention a dose of antioxidants and filling fiber. The combo of all-natural nuts, fruits, and whole grains, plus delicious chocolate, makes for a healthy treat that tastes guilt-worthy.

    Snack Well’s 100-Calorie Packs

    Go-to Flavors: Mini Fudge Dipped Pretzels, Chocolate Crème Sandwich Cookies

    The salty-sweet combo of chocolate-covered pretzels is hard to resist on a normal day, let alone on Halloween when chocolate treats are calling your name from every direction. These 100-calorie packs are perfectly portion controlled, allowing you to indulge your cravings but keep you from going overboard.

    Square Bar

    Go-to Flavors: Chocolate Coated Crunch, Chocolate Coated Mint, Chocolate Coated Coconut

    If candy bars are your go-to sweet treat, then the Square Bar is a perfect treat to hand out at Halloween. Made with all organic ingredients and no added flavors, each bar boasts an impressive amount of protein that makes for a more satisfying bite. The chocolate-coated crunch flavor rivals a Nestle Crunch bar in taste, while saving you 10 grams of sugar per serving and providing 12 grams of filling protein that will power you through Halloween night! If you have lovers of Andes Chocolate Mints in the house, reach for the chocolate-coated mint variety, and the chocolate-coated coconut flavor will appease a Mounds craving!

  • Nine Foods That Are Nice for Your Teeth

    We all know that brushing and flossing your teeth daily is the best route to good oral health. But did you know that eating a diet rich in certain foods can be just as important to your teeth and gums? Your teeth are irreplaceable, so taking advantage of adding some power to your daily oral health care is a good idea.

    Grab some healthy fruits and vegetables and have a snack while you’re reviewing these nine foods and beverages that will leave you with a brighter smile.

    1.    Green Tea is full of natural antioxidants that stop plaque from accumulating on your teeth. Which of course reduces your risk of cavities (and as a bonus, reduces bad breath). In addition, you’ll find fluoride in some green teas (take a look at the label).

    2.    Dairy products (think milk and yogurt) are low in sugars and acids, which makes them super as a healthy snack or for quenching your thirst. Remember, sugar and acids are tough on teeth, causing erosion and decay. Plus dairy products are packed with calcium, which helps your teeth and bones.

    3.    Cheese also has major benefits for your teeth and gums. It’s also packed with calcium, and as a bonus also has phosphate. Both help promote healthy teeth. Cheese also does a great job of balancing the pH in your mouth, helps create more saliva, rebuilds the enamel on your teeth, and eliminates bacteria that are the cause of gum disease and cavities.

    4.    Fruit in raw form is a good choice for healthy teeth. It reduces plaque and the Vitamin C in the fruit helps your body’s cells. A lack of Vitamin C can eventually lead to gum disease.

    5.    Vegetables are full of Vitamin A, which helps create tooth enamel. Vegies full of Vitamin A include broccoli, carrots, sweet potato and pumpkin. Eat them raw and you’ll increase the amount of Vitamin A you are getting plus the raw vegetables will clean your teeth and massage your gums (raw celery is a great choice). Plus the vegies will help you produce more saliva, which washes away cavity-causing bacteria.

    6.    Onions are a vegetable, but they are unique in that they contain tons of powerful anti-bacterial sulphur compounds, which kill the bacteria that harm your teeth and gums. Best results will come if you eat the onions raw, although that might make it tough if you want to be around other people!

    7.    Sesame seeds are wonderful at dissolving plaque and helping to build enamel on your teeth. In addition, they are full of calcium, which is good for your bones and teeth.

    8.    Meat-based proteins are rich in phosphorus, which when combined with calcium and Vitamin D help strengthen our teeth and bones.

    9.    Water is a powerful oral health ally. It cleans bacteria and food debris out of your mouth, encourages the production of saliva, and provides hydration for your gums.

    Source: Dental.Net

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    eggs

    super-broccoli

  • How to Be the Boss of Your Floss

    Brushing and flossing your teeth are the foundation of good oral health (along with regular visits to your dentist). But for many people, it’s the flossing part of that foundation that leaves them a bit puzzled. Is there a proper way to floss? What’s the most effective approach? Do I really need to floss if I’m brushing twice a day?

    To help you become the boss of your floss, we have a set of helpful tips in this week’s blog.

    Tip 1 – Floss daily

    According to the American Dental Association (and every dentist you ask), you should be flossing daily. That’s because flossing will remove plaque that your toothbrush can’t get rid of from between your teeth and at your gum line. Plaque is the first step on the road to a cavity since it hardens into tartar.

    Tip 2 – Anytime is floss time

    Patients often ask us when they should floss. After they brush? Before they brush? After a meal? Before bed? We recommend you choose a time once a day when you aren’t too tired and have a couple of minutes and then get in the habit of flossing then.

    Tip 3 – What type of floss is best?

    There are two main types of floss to choose from – nylon (also called multifilament because it is made of multiple strands) and PTFE floss (monofilament, which is single strand). Nylon floss can tear of shred if you have tight spaces between your teeth. You generally won’t run into the same problem with PTFE floss, but it is more expensive. Talk to your dental hygienist or your dentist for recommendations that would work best for your teeth.

    Tip 4 – Proper flossing technique

    Here are five simple steps to help you flawlessly floss:

    1. Starting with about 18 inches of floss, wind most of the floss around each middle finger, leaving an inch or two of floss to work with;
    2. Holding the floss tautly between your thumbs and index fingers, slide it gently up-and-down between your teeth;
    3. Gently curve the floss around the base of each tooth, making sure you go beneath the gumline. Never snap or force the floss, as this may cut or bruise delicate gum tissue;
    4. Use clean sections of floss as you move from tooth to tooth; and
    5. To remove the floss, use the same back-and-forth motion to bring the floss up and away from the teeth.

    Be sure that you don’t floss too hard and damage your gums. If it hurts, go easier. If you haven’t flossed regularly, it will probably take a couple of weeks for the slight discomfort to go away. If you have recurring pain, be sure to see your dentist.

    Tip 5 – What about using a flosser?

    For a fair number of people, using a flosser is easier and more convenient. If you haven’t used one before, here’s a quick guide to success! Hold the flosser handle firmly and point the flossing tip at an angle facing the area you want to floss first (either top teeth or bottom teeth). Guide the floss gently between two teeth and be sure to avoid snapping or popping the floss. Use the same zigzag motion that you would us with standard floss. Bend the floss around each tooth and slide it under the gum line and along each tooth surface.

    Sources: MouthHealthy.org, Oral B, Colgate, American Dental Association

  • Keep A Bright Smile With These 3 Tips

    If having a bright smile is important to you, then we have three simple tips to help you minimize the impact of teeth-staining foods and beverages.

    So what is most likely to stain your teeth when you are eating or drinking? Anything that is intensely colored will challenge the brightness of your teeth. Think reds and blacks and purples – items like coffee, red wine or grapes.

    Why are dark-colored foods and beverages so tough on the teeth? Primarily because of three reasons: 1) chromogens, which are intensely colored molecules that love to stick to your dental enamel, 2) acid, which both erodes the enamel of your teeth and promotes staining, and 3) tannins, which increase the ability of chromogens’ ability to attach to your tooth enamel.

    The worst foods and beverages when it comes to staining your teeth are red wine (although white wine also promotes tooth staining), black teas, sodas, sports drinks, dark sauces, most berries and candy and sweets.

    But you don’t have to avoid these foods if you follow these three simple tips to help reduce the impact on your teeth and oral health. After all, a lot of the dark-colored foods and beverages we listed have definite overall health benefits. Many contain large amounts of antioxidants, which help defend your cells from damage caused by potentially harmful molecules known as free radicals (which are a contributing factor to many chronic diseases).

    Here are three suggestions to keep your smile bright while still enjoying the health benefits of darkly-colored foods:

    Drink through a straw: If you use this simple approach, you’ll avoid flooding your front teeth with beverages that will stain them. You more than likely won’t start sipping your coffee or wine through a straw, but juices, iced tea and colas are definite options.

    Promptly swallow. Avoid letting a darkly colored food or beverage sit in your mouth for too long. Of course, you want to savor it, but the longer it stays there before you swallow, the greater opportunity it has to stain your teeth.

    Swish away those stains. You can’t always brush right away after eating or drinking, so a good “on-the-go” alternative is to swish with H20. In fact, if you eat or drink acidic foods and then brush your teeth, the enamel on your teeth can suffer abrasions because the acid has softened the enamel a bit.

    Along with our three tips you can use when you’re eating or drinking, we recommend you brush twice daily and floss once a day. See your dentist every six months for a check up and dental hygiene visit as well. Follow this plan, and you’re bound to be smiling brightly for years to come.

    Source: WebMD and American Dental Association

  • What’s Bruxism and How Does It Impact Oral Health?

    Most of us don’t have a clue what “bruxism” means. However, if you’ve suffered from bruxism, you know it can be extremely unpleasant. If you’ve sought treatment, then you also know that your dentist can be a lifeline to dealing with the effects of bruxism.

    Bruxism is the technical term for grinding your teeth. It’s a fairly common condition, and a little of it won’t do lasting damage to your teeth. But a lot of it can impact your health in a variety of areas. Because the majority of people grind their teeth while they are sleeping, they usually don’t notice the effects until they start to experience health issues.

    Once you do realize you are grinding your teeth – or your dentist notices it when you come in for a dental check-up – your dentist can help you effectively tackle the issue and positively improve both your oral health and overall health.

    What are the symptoms of bruxism?

    Grinding or clenching your teeth (it may be so loud that other people notice it)

    Chipped, flattened, fractured or loose teeth

    Extra tooth sensitivity

    A feeling of soreness or tightness in your face or jaw

    Headache or dull earache

    Tinnitus – commonly called ringing in your ears

    What are the causes of bruxism?

    Although an exact cause of bruxism hasn’t been discovered by medical scientists, there are several causes (physical and psychological) that have been linked to bruxism.

    “Negative emotions”: Stress, anger, anxiety and frustration have all been connected to bruxism as triggers.

    Concentrating: To reduce stress or concentrate, people will often clench or grind their teeth (and they are usually not aware of this habit).

    Alignment: Malocclusion – commonly called poor teeth alignment can lead to bruxism.

    Sleep Apnea: Bruxism can be exacerbated by sleep apnea.

    Other Causes:  Medical disorders, some psychiatric medications, and even acid reflux can impact teeth grinding.

    Available treatment options

    Often, a person with bruxism will either grow out of the condition or have a less intense form of the condition that doesn’t need to be treated. However, if you have a more intense form of bruxism, there are an array of treatment options to choose from, including:

    Dental Intervention: Relief from the effects of bruxism can often be found by a visit to your dentist. After doing a thorough examination, they may recommend splints or a mouth guard to stop further damage to your teeth. Your dentist will also check for misalignment of your teeth – which may be a culprit for your bruxism – and then determine a treatment plan that is appropriate.

    Therapeutic Approaches: If your bruxism is based on psychological factors, different therapeutic approaches that focus on the underlying cause can be successful. These include behavior therapy, stress management, and/or biofeedback.  

    Medications: Generally, medications aren’t used to treat bruxism, but in severe cases a doctor may prescribe Botox injections or muscle relaxants to prevent grinding.

    If you can get a good grasp of bruxism’s symptoms, causes, and treatments, you have a good chance of finding success in controlling or eliminating bruxism. That’s bound to let you rest easy knowing that grinding your teeth isn’t wearing down your health.

    Sources: MayoClinic.org, WebMD.co

  • All About Dental Veneers

    Dental veneers can be an easy, inexpensive approach to fixing teeth that are flawed. They can be an ideal choice to enhance the appearance of your front teeth by covering discolorations or imperfections. What exactly are veneers? They are a very thin shell that is bonded to the front of your teeth and is made either from ceramic (porcelain) or a composite resin material.

    In many situations, a veneer can be a good alternative to getting a crown. They last for many years if properly applied, and are a more conservative method of changing the color, size or shape of a tooth.

    What types of problems can a veneer help? They are best for fixing teeth that are worn down, chipped or broken; misaligned, uneven or irregularly shaped; and teeth with gaps between them.

    How veneers are attached to your teeth

    To have veneers attached to your teeth, your dentist may need up to three appointments to complete the procedure. This will include diagnosis and planning for the treatment, preparation of the veneer, and bonding it to your teeth.

    The procedure begins by buffing half a millimeter of the teeth where the veneers will be attached.  This allows the veneer to be attached without altering the profile of your tooth. You may require a local anesthetic during this part of the procedure. If you have a composite resin veneer, your dentist will bond and sculpt the composite material onto your teeth. This usually takes one appointment. For porcelain veneers, your dentist will take a mold of your teeth, and then send the mold to a lab that will make the porcelain veneer. This often takes several days and if you feel your teeth are unsightly while you wait, your dentist can attach a temporary veneer.

    Once the porcelain veneers are ready to be placed on your teeth, your dentist will check for fit and the shade or color. Be sure to ask to view the veneers while they are resting on your teeth but before they are bonded. The color of the veneer can still be adjusted at this point by the cement’s shade that will be used to bond the veneer to your tooth. Once the cement is applied to the veneer and existing tooth, a special light beam is used to harden the cement and complete the bonding.

    The advantages of veneers

    What are the advantages of having dental veneers applied to your teeth? They are natural looking, your gum tissue will tolerate them well if they are porcelain veneers, and they are stain resistant (if they are made from porcelain). They often don’t require as much shaping as a crown but still offer a strong, aesthetically pleasing alternative.

    The disadvantages of veneers

    So what are the disadvantages? You can’t reverse the process, veneers generally can’t be repaired if they are cracked or chipped, and your tooth may become more sensitive to beverages and food that are hot or cold.

    Finally, remember that veneers are not perfect replacements for natural teeth – they are facsimiles. For instance, you may see slight variations in the color of your veneers – although you’ll often see the same type of variations in natural teeth. But if you’re not happy with your current smile, veneers can be a viable way to improve your smile and increase your self-esteem.

    Sources: Worldental.org, KnowYourTeeth.com, WebMD fffffffffffff

  • Have You Considered Dental Sealants to Prevent Cavities?

    A good way to prevent cavities – especially for children – is to apply a dental sealant to your teeth. The sealant acts as a barrier against cavities. It is made from a plastic material and dentists apply it to the area where decay most often occurs in your mouth – on your back teeth’s chewing surfaces.

    Although daily flossing and brushing are critical to good oral health, they often miss some of the food particles and plaque in the depressions and grooves of your molars and premolars. Also, while fluoride does a good job of protecting the smooth surfaces of your teeth, but your back teeth don’t get as protected by the fluoride.

    Why are sealants important?

    The best time to protect your teeth is before they develop decay. Remember, sugar in the food and beverages you consume is used by germs in your mouth to create acids. And it is those acids that cause cavities in your teeth. Therefore, if you apply sealant, it prevents those acids from eating away at your teeth and forcing you to get a filling, a crown, or a cap – all used to restore decayed teeth.

    Are sealants only for kids?

    While children benefit the most from dental sealants, some adults at risk of cavities or who have deep fissures and grooves in their teeth can benefit from dental sealants. Talk to your dentist about your specific needs.

    However, it is highly recommended that children get dental sealants as soon as their permanent molars come in to prevent decay from impacting their teeth. Those initial permanent molars develop in children between 5 and 7 years of age. Their second set of permanent molars come in when they are between 11 and 14 years.

    It can be important to also keep baby teeth healthy, since they save space in a child’s mouth for their permanent teeth. For that reason, be sure to check with your dentist to see if dental sealants would be a good idea on your child’s baby teeth – especially if they have deep grooves and pits.

    How does a dentist apply dental sealants?

    It takes your dentist or dental hygienist just a few minutes to apply a dental sealant to your teeth or your child’s teeth. The process includes:

    • Thoroughly cleaning the teeth;
    • Drying each tooth, and then wrapping an absorbent material around each tooth to keep it dry;
    • Applying an acid solution to each tooth’s chewing surface, which helps the dental sealant bond to the tooth’s surface;
    • Rinsing and drying the teeth;
    • Painting the dental sealant onto the enamel of each tooth, where it will bond to the tooth and harden. Some sealants use a curing light to help it harden.

    What’s the life span of dental sealants?

    You can expect the dental sealant applied to your teeth to last up to 10 years. But be sure to have your sealant checked at your regular dental visits to make sure that the sealant hasn’t become chipped or worn away. Repairing sealants is quick, since the dentist or dental hygienist simply paints on additional sealant material.

    Can you see sealants?

    Dental sealants can be slightly tinted, clear or white. They are visible up close, but generally aren’t noticeable when your child smiles or talks.

    Sources: MouthHealthy.org, National Institute for Dental and Craniofacial Research, KnowYourTeeth.com, Colgate, American Dental Association (ADA)