Dental lasers have been used in clinical practice since 1989, and they’re currently FDA-approved for many different dental concerns.
Lasers focus a single wavelength of light energy into a strong, cohesive beam. When the beam is directed at a tooth or at gum tissue, it can remove or reshape that tissue.
Laser dentistry is a step up from the traditional drills, scalpels, and probes, providing a more precise, comfortable, and efficient option for treating a wide variety of oral health issues.
At Lancaster Dental Care Associates, our expert team of dentists uses the SOL® Desktop Laser from DenMat to treat periodontal disease in our patients in the Lancaster, California, area.
The diode laser emits controlled, precise laser energy to cut away diseased gum tissue and restore oral health. Keep reading to learn about five ways laser dentistry can improve your dental experience.
Periodontal disease, also called gum disease, is a progressive bacterial infection and inflammation of the gum tissue that lines your mouth and supports your teeth.
The condition can easily worsen if you don’t maintain good oral hygiene habits, including brushing, flossing, and seeing your dentist for twice-yearly checkups.
In the United States, it’s a serious problem. Approximately 50% of adults over 30 have mild to severe signs, and it’s also the leading cause of tooth loss.
The earliest stage is called gingivitis. Bacteria in your mouth feed on sugars left behind from what you eat and drink, forming a sticky plaque on your teeth and gums. The plaque triggers inflammation of the tissue, and the inflamed gums are likely to bleed when you brush or floss, as well as feel tender or sore to the touch.
Left untreated, gingivitis progresses to periodontitis. The plaque hardens into tartar (calculus) beneath the gumline, causing additional inflammation and pain. The bacteria also produce toxins that further irritate and damage the gums.
Still left untreated, the gum tissue starts to pull back from the teeth, leaving the roots exposed and highly sensitive to hot and cold. Gaps, or pockets, form along the roots, causing permanent teeth to loosen, become unstable, or even to fall out.
The infection doesn’t stop with the gum tissue; it can also cause bone and connective tissues to deteriorate. It’s possible that losing bone density leaves the bone even more susceptible to periodontal bacteria, increasing the risk for periodontitis in a vicious circle of cause and effect.
The SOL laser uses light wavelengths absorbed by water and hemoglobin found in the gum tissue and connected blood vessels.
As it cuts away damaged tissue, the laser seals blood vessels and nerve endings, preventing major bleeding. It also sterilizes the remaining tissue, eradicating the bacterial infection and activating tissue regrowth at the same time.
Here are five of the many benefits of laser dentistry.
Laser light is a powerful tool, but it’s safe when used by trained dental professionals like ours at Lancaster Dental Care Associates. They can treat the tissue damaged by periodontal disease while making sure surrounding areas remain intact and unharmed.
Dental anxiety affects about 36% of Americans, with one of the main fears being the sound of the dentist’s drill and the thoughts that the sound conjures of potential pain.
Lasers are much quieter than a drill, though, and they’re less intrusive. That may make you more willing to come in for routine checkups, so we can treat your gum disease while it’s in its early stages and more easily repaired.
Lasers produce less pain than many traditional dental procedures, and that means you require less anesthesia — and sometimes none at all
Because we can control the laser’s beam more accurately than a traditional drill, we may not need to remove as much gum tissue, leaving areas surrounding the diseased parts unscathed in the process.
Since the laser sterilizes the tissue as it goes, the infection clears more quickly. In addition, since the laser also cauterizes the blood vessels, you bleed relatively little, both during the procedure and afterward. Both of these means you recover faster and can get on with your life.
If you’re showing any of the signs of gum disease, it’s time to come into Lancaster Dental Care Associates for an evaluation with one of our dentists and treatment using our state-of-the-art dental laser. To schedule, give our office a call at 661-215-8130, or book online with us today.