We have all heard of lasers being used to treat skin discoloration, to remove hair growth, and to smooth out wrinkles. Dental laser systems have been researched since the 1960’s. For over ten years they have been accepted by the United States Food and Drug Administration for use in dental offices. One of the uses of a dental laser system is to assist in gum healing.
Many of our patients have already experienced the dental laser system to assist them with gum healing within our office. The procedure is painless and takes about five minutes. The laser emits light energy of a particular wavelength. When we apply this to the gums it results in the sterilization of the pockets around the teeth. This sterilization reduces or removes the bacterial levels in the pockets. As a result the environment within the pockets is more conducive to complete healing. Gingival bleeding decreases or stops. We also see reduction of the depths of the pockets. This happens because inflamed gingival tissues absorb the laser energy, which then kills the bacteria and promotes healing.
Some patients do still require a “deeper cleaning”, known as scaling or scaling and root planing. This is also known as mechanical debridement. In this procedure we clean more thoroughly below to gum level inside the pockets to remove plaque, tartar, and bacteria. Patients are often anesthetized for this debridement procedure. While some patients still do need this procedure, research has shown that there is a 50% improvement in gum health when the debridement is followed up by the laser bacterial reduction procedure.
This laser bacterial reduction procedure is very safe. It is even safe for pregnant patients and around dental implants.
While this is an effective procedure we do not recommend it for every patient. This procedure is recommended when there is evidence of gingivitis, when patients have diabetes, when patients are pregnant, during periodontal maintenance visits every three to four months, and for patients with fixed orthodontic appliances.
If we find that you would benefit from the procedure we will explain it to you and allow you to make the decision to pursue it. We do find that it works very well. If you have any questions over this we invite you to contact us by calling (972) 250-2580, or you may contact us in any way you see available within this web page. We thank you for your interest.