A preventive resin is a thin, resin coating applied to the chewing surface of molars, premolars and any deep grooves (called pits and fissures) of teeth. More than 75% of dental decay begins in these deep grooves. Teeth with these conditions are hard to clean and are very susceptible to decay. A preventive resin protects the tooth by sealing deep grooves, creating a smooth, easy to clean surface. In the past, sealants were used but today preventive resins provide a stronger and longer lasting result.
Preventive resins are easily applied. Typically no local anesthetic (freezing) is needed. Stain is removed from the grooves to provide a clean enamel surface and then the preventive resin can then be flowed into the grooves and bonded to the tooth.
Children, teens, and adults can all benefit from preventive resins if treated early! However, if there is decay in the tooth it is too late for a preventive resin and the tooth will need to be restored using a tooth coloured restoration.
Preventive resins can protect teeth from decay for many years, and need to be monitored for wear and chipping at regular dental visits.