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Prevention

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Sealants

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INFORMATION ABOUT SEALANTS


What causes decay?

Decay is caused by dental plaque, a thin, sticky colorless deposit of bacteria that constantly forms on everyone’s teeth. When sugar is eaten, the bacteria in plaque produce acids that attack the tooth enamel. After repeated acid attacks, the enamel breaks down, and a cavity (hole) is formed.

What is a sealant?

A sealant is a clear shaded plastic material that is applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth (premolars and molars), where decay occurs most often. This sealant acts as a barrier, protecting the decay-prone areas of the teeth from plaque and acid.

Why are sealants necessary?

When the teeth are developing, depressions and grooves form in the chewing surfaces of the enamel. These features are called pits and fissures. They are impossible to keep clean, because the bristles of a toothbrush cannot reach into them. Therefore, pits and fissures are snug places for plaque and bits of food to hide. By forming a thin covering over the pits and fissures, sealants keep out plaque and food, and thus decrease the risk of decay.

Who should have sealants applied?

Although children receive significant benefits from sealants, adults can also be at risk for pit and fissure decay and thus be candidates for sealants. Sealants are also recommended for those who receive topical applications of fluoride and who live in communities with fluoridated water. Fluoride helps fight decay on the smooth surfaces of the teeth, but it is least effective in pits and fissures.

How are sealants applied?

Each tooth takes only a few minutes to seal. First, the teeth that will be sealed are cleaned. The chewing surfaces are then etched (roughened) with a weak acidic solution to help the sealant adhere to the teeth. Finally, the sealant is brushed on the tooth enamel and allowed to harden. Some sealants need a special curing light to help them harden.

Do sealants need to be reapplied?

When the sealant is applied, finger-like strands penetrate the pits and fissures of the tooth enamel. Although the sealant cannot be seen with the naked eye, the protective effect of these strands continues. As a result, it may be several years before another application of sealant is needed. Reapplication of the sealant will continue the protection against decay and may save the time and expense of having a tooth restored. Sealants will be checked during regular dental visits to determine if reapplication is necessary.

Cari-Free

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INFORMATION ABOUT CARI-FREE PREVENTION PRODUCTS

We recommend a new standard of care to our patients by offering the CariFree System in the prevention of dental cavities. This system differs from any over-the-counter product in that it helps significantly change the environment inside the mouth. The amount of acid producing bacteria present in the mouth and the body’s ability to neutralize acid will ultimately determine the rate at which a person develops dental cavities. The less acid producing bacteria present and a more neutral pH of the mouth will decrease a person’s risk of developing dental cavities.

Proper brushing and flossing are very important as is the use of Fluoride. However, these alone will not significantly decrease the amount of acid producing bacteria and will not neutralize the pH of the mouth. Although over-the-counter rinses contain Fluoride, they do not significantly alter the bacteria count or the pH of the mouth.

CariFree products are based on many scientific studies which look at altering the oral environment in order to lower the risk of developing dental cavities. By using these specially designed products along with proper brushing and flossing, the risk of developing cavities can be significantly lowered.

Our goal is to continue to be committed to integrating evolving scientific understandings with the very latest and best technology and treatment options in the care of your child.

Fluoride Varnish

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INFORMATION ABOUT FLUORIDE VARNISH

We use the latest technology in prevention for our patients. We use Fluoride Varnish application at each 6 month check up appointment. Fluoride varnish has been shown to stimulate remineralization (hardening) of the enamel and protection from breakdown for up to 6 months. This is just an example of the latest technology in prevention that we provide routinely for our patients.

Information about Fluoride

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INFORMATION ABOUT FLUORIDE VARNISH

We use the latest technology in prevention for our patients. We use Fluoride Varnish application at each 6 month check up appointment. Fluoride varnish has been shown to stimulate remineralization (hardening) of the enamel and protection from breakdown for up to 6 months. This is just an example of the latest technology in prevention that we provide routinely for our patients.

Post-Op Instructions Post-Op Instructions
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Texas Dental Association

TDA

American Association of Orthodontists

AAO

 American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry

AAPD

American Dental Association

ADA

Our Address

Jim Bowden, D.D.S.
7185 Westwind Drive
El Paso, Texas 79912

915-585-6373

915-585-6372

Get Directions To Our Practice

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Office Hours

Monday 7:30 AM 5:30 PM
(Closed 11:15 AM – 1:45 PM)
Tuesday 7:30 AM 5:30 PM
(Closed 11:15 AM – 1:45 PM)
Wednesday 7:30 AM 5:30 PM
(Closed 11:15 AM – 1:45 PM)
Thursday 7:30 AM 5:30 PM
(Closed 11:15 AM – 1:45 PM)
Friday Closed
Saturday Closed After Hours Contact Service
Sunday Closed After Hours Contact Service

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