Q&A with Dr. Ellie: Should I Get a Sealant?

Every month Dr. Ellie Phillips will answer your oral health questions as part of the Ultimate Oral Health Guide.

Q: My dentist would like to apply a white sealant to my pre-molar because it has a very deep fissure which she said is causing staining/food to get caught. I do see a fine dark line in that tooth frequently and she demonstrated with her explorer how deep the tip is able to reach in. I am 46 and in good health. I am using your complete system — should I allow her to do the sealant? (Perhaps this situation would be an exception to your usual advice to avoid sealants since eventually they leak, harbor bacteria, and do need to be replaced every few years?) -L



Hi L,

I cannot diagnose nor give information about a specific tooth here, but we can discuss why I believe it is better to avoid sealants whenever possible. In this case, a sealant would probably be extremely small, and it may look nicer– so your decision could be made for esthetic reasons.

On the other hand, most US dentists have never seen a cavity reverse, and only a few believe in remineralization. Slowly this is changing, but xylitol is new to the United States and without its help, “miraculous” tooth repairs are not possible. Personally I suggest you use Zellies 100% Xylitol Mints and the Complete Mouth Care System for at least 12 months and “watch” the outcome for this tooth before making any decision (by the way, we would all love to hear the rest of this story if you decide to wait…..).

Every time you eat a Zellies Mint and it dissolves in your mouth, xylitol liquid washes over teeth –into every pit and fissure. In these hidden places, xylitol eliminates harmful bacteria that may be lodged there. Without cavity-forming bacteria, danger is averted – and a sealant becomes unnecessary.

The biggest problem with sealants is they contain BPA (BisPhenol A) a chemical that is disruptive since it mimics estrogen and can get into brain tissue. There are additional problems with sealants for kid’s teeth, since healthy bacteria in tooth grooves are a positive source to balance mouth bacteria and fight infection and cavities. This idea of promoting healthy bacteria in tooth grooves is a little-known concept – and we will discuss this in future newsletters.

When you use xylitol at the end of every meal and snack, your risk for decay will be reduced so much that the need for a preventive sealant is eliminated.

Best wishes,

Dr. Ellie


For more information on oral health and xylitol, please visit all of Dr. Ellie’s web-sites:

Zellies.com – learn more & order your Zellies Xylitol & the Complete Mouth Care System
Dr. Ellie.com – a great resource for learning more about oral health & Dr. Ellie
Dr. E Oral Health Coaching – articles, resources and videos to help you learn more

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About the Author Dr. Ellie

My passion is educating people about oral health. For decades I’ve worked with patients of all ages, in different countries, in high and low-risk communities, and from every walk of life. I’ve seen the same results over and over again –people who transformed their oral health – sometimes in days or weeks, even after they had suffered years of pain and frustration. It’s never too late, and my ways will give you the key to a lifetime of improved oral health.

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