It hasn’t been long since the oral laser was first introduced to dentistry, but it has changed things for the better. With sophisticated medical lasers, it's never been easier to perform complex dental procedures. What’s more, procedures that once were uncomfortable for some patients are now completely painless, bringing back many who haven’t seen a dentist in years.
In 2017 and beyond, dental laser technology will be introduced into many dental practices. In fact, lasers are being applied to new types of treatments every day. Over the next few years, laser treatment may become the standard of care in addition to hand instrumentation.
Here Are Some of the Different Laser Therapy Procedures in Dentistry
What can you expect from tomorrow’s dental lasers? Let’s look at some key trends:
Laser Gum Reshaping and Periodontal Therapy
Gum disease treatment used to be costly, time-consuming and painful. With lasers, things are far easier. A laser can be used to precisely target damaged tissue and get to the root of infection – all without damaging nearby healthy tissue. This leads to much faster recovery and more comfort for the patient. Similar procedures may be utilized during root canal to guard against infection.
Laser Cavity Detection
Laser decay detection is a useful tool along with x-rays and a visual dentist examination. The laser shoots a safe and painless light at the tooth. The tooth absorbs some of the light and reflects the rest of it back to the sensor showing a digital reading; a possible detections of decay in the very early stages.
Laser Plaque Removal
If there’s one process in dentistry people dislike more than any other, it’s plaque removal. When traditional instruments are used, some discomfort is possible. Not only do lasers provide additional precision, they are a safe and effective treatment for patients that need a more specialized cleaning.
Laser Canker Sore Treatment
Believe it or not, lasers even can treat canker sores. Canker sores can be caused by a number of issues, including genetics, stress and nutritional issues. They can come on suddenly and unexpectedly – and they hurt! With laser treatment, the problem is solved quickly. Individual sores can be gently and safely closed off, reducing pain and starting the healing process.
Thanks to lasers, it’s an exciting time in dentistry. To learn more, contact Dr. Kim Okamura, D.D.S. – Seattle’s top laser dentist.