This post is the third in a series on what preventive resin restorations (PRRs) are, who they can benefit most, how they function, and how they are applied. If you haven’t read parts 1 and 2 yet, I recommend you do before continuing.
How are preventive resin restorations made? (continued)
The first step in making preventive resin restorations is to completely clean and dry the tooth. This is because any saliva or other contaminants will interfere with the process. Next, the dentist will apply a solution to the surface of the teeth that is specially formulated to help the resin bond. After another rinse and dry, the dentist will carefully paint the resin onto the teeth. Some resins are designed to dry on their own, while others are formulated to cure when exposed to a specific wavelength of light. If you have to wear sunglasses for this part of the procedure, that’s because the wavelength required to cure the resin is in the ultraviolet part of the spectrum. Don’t worry – it’s not powerful enough to give your gums a sunburn! It’s desirable to design resin that cures under UV light because there isn’t much UV in a dentist’s office. That way they can get the PRRs just right and cure it when they’re ready.
How long do preventive resin restorations last?
With proper care, preventive resin restorations can last decades. This is because the resin they are composed of is very similar – in some cases the same – as what is used to fill cavities. Of course, preventive resin restorations won’t change the fact that you’ll need good dental habits to keep your smile healthy. Regular brushing and flossing and avoiding things that could mechanically damage your PRRs – like chewing ice – will ensure you get the most possible life out of them.
Speaking of flossing, it’s particularly important to keep up with your flossing routine with PRRs. They cover the surfaces of your teeth, but they won’t help in between teeth – that’s the domain of floss.
Want to learn more about PRRs? Check out our page on preventive resin restorations.
Ready to book a consultation and find out if PRRs are right for you? Call the office today or use our contact form.