Laser dentistry refers to any dental procedures that involve the use of a laser. Recent advances in laser technology have allowed many dentists to offer laser treatment. During a dental laser treatment a laser device that transmits a highly concentrated beam of light is used to treat tooth decay, enamel, and gum tissue. Common laser dentistry procedures include oral surgery or periodontal treatment (gum disease, gingivitis) often referred to as laser periodontics, cavity treatment, and teeth whitening.
It has been shown that dental lasers are safe for both children and adults. In addition, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved several types of dentistry lasers for use on adults and children. Many of the lasers for dentistry are similar or identical in design to other medical lasers that have been used successfully for years in the specialties of ophthalmology, neurosurgery, Ear/Nose/Throat (ENT), and dermatology.
Advantages of Laser Dentistry include:
- Minimal or no anesthesia
- Minimal bleeding
- More controlled swelling
- Reduced postoperative infection/discomfort
- Less chance of infection
- Reduced time in dentist's office
- Less pain
- No noise (like a traditional dentist's drill)
- Enhance effect of tooth whitening
- No absorption of harmful chemicals
- Improved bonding process
- Quick removal of tooth decay
- Longer lasting fillings · Faster healing
- Preservation of tooth structure
- A more sterilized environment (dental laser kills bacteria)
- For the treatment of canker sore and herpes lesions,
- the laser can actually decrease the pain experienced by these sores.
Laser Dentistry Procedures and Effects:
Laser dentistry or laser periodontics allows for the treatment of gum disease at any earlier stage. In addition, it can be useful to pregnant women and people with debilitating medical conditions. While there is no guarantee of total "pain free laser dentistry" discomfort is greatly reduced. By receiving dental laser treatments, patients often have no need for Novocain or other anesthetics! Dental laser treatment, often referred to as laser periodontal treatment, works well for treating canker sores and bacterial infections around teeth and gums.
During a treatment it is also common for the patient to wear protective glasses toprotect his/her eyes from continued exposure to bright light. The laser emits a tiny ticking sound-a far cry from the days of traditional dental drills. However, keep in mind that a laser might not be appropriate for all procedures. Today, many dental services can be performed with either the laser or traditional treatment, and are generally covered by most insurance plans. Your dentist should be able to determine whether or not laser dentistry is right for you.