Cavities can affect any portion of your teeth, but one of the most common locations is the pits and fissures. Just what are pit and fissures, and how can you prevent cavities from developing here? Read on to find out.
What Are Pits and Fissures?
Pits and fissures are deep grooves that are found on the chewing surfaces of your teeth, specifically the premolars and molars.
Without proper dental hygiene, cavities can form in these pits, and they can be found deeper in the molars than with the premolars.
Pits and fissures are used to help you chew your food, but debris can easily get stuck within the groves. If they aren't cleaned regularly, plaque can begin to accumulate. Unfortunately, it is difficult to reach these areas with a toothbrush, so these are common places for cavities to form.
Treating Pit and Fissure Cavities
If a pit and fissure cavity has reached the dentin of your teeth, your dentist will need to put a restoration in place, such as a crown, composite, or filling. The cavity can be difficult to reach, but it is important to correct the problem so that it doesn't worsen.
Preventing Pit and Fissure Cavities
Fortunately, pit and fissure cavities can be prevented, and there are things that you can do on your own to keep them at bay.
Make sure that you are brushing your teeth twice per day for a minimum of two minutes each session. Ensure that you are brushing all of the tooth surfaces, including the chewing surfaces toward the back of your mouth.
Your dentist can also help you to protect against these cavities by placing sealants on your teeth. These coatings will fill in the pits and fissures so that food and plaque can't get inside.
These are most commonly applied to children's teeth as soon as the adult teeth erupt. Contact our office if sealants are an option for you.