12. What is Laser Dentistry1

What is Laser Dentistry & How It Works

The use of lasers to treat a variety of dental conditions is known as laser dentistry. For procedures involving tooth tissue, it was first used commercially in clinical dental practice in 1989.

What Is Dental Laser Technology?

Compared to drills and other non-laser tools, laser dentistry may provide a more comfortable alternative to treatment for a variety of dental procedures involving hard or soft tissue.

LASER stands for “light amplification by the stimulated emission of radiation.” A very focused and focused beam of light energy is produced by the instrument. When this laser light strikes tissue, it causes a reaction that enables it to either remove or shape the tissue.

Laser dentistry is used in a variety of procedures, including:

  • treating hypersensitivity
  • treating tooth decay
  • treating gum disease
  • whitening teeth

Lasers have the potential to improve dental procedures’ effectiveness, affordability, and comfort. The FDA has approved laser dentistry as a treatment option for a number of dental conditions.

It’s important to note that the American Dental Association (ADA) has not yet done so, despite their optimism regarding the field’s future.

What Differences Do Immediate Dentures Have?

With conventional dentures, after your dentist removes your teeth, you are sent home to heal your gums and tissue. You don’t have any teeth in place while you’re healing. Following the healing of the gums, your dentist will take a mold of your gums and other measurements in order to order a new denture. This means that you might go for several months without having any teeth in place.

While your teeth are still in place, your dentist creates a mold of your mouth for immediate dentures. Before your extractions, dentures are made, and after the teeth are extracted, your denture is put in place right away. You can then leave the dentist’s office smiling broadly.

Benefits Of Laser Dentistry

Laser dentistry is a popular choice among dentists due to its unique advantages that facilitate procedures and shorten patients’ recovery and discomfort times.

  • Patients are less likely to require sutures
  • Anesthesia may not be necessary
  • The laser will sterilize the gums, making infection less likely
  • Less damage to gums shortens the healing time
  • Patients lose less blood than in traditional surgery

Disadvantages Of Laser Dentistry

Unfortunately, not everyone can benefit from immediate dentures. Some common disadvantages can include:

  • Requires multiple trips to the dentist before and after extraction to receive measurements, make adjustments, and be fitted for a permanent denture if necessary
  • As your gums heal and the swelling goes down, your dentures may loosen and cause discomfort

How Are Laser Procedures Carried Out?

Hard tissue and soft tissue procedures are the two primary types of dental laser procedures. Soft tissue refers to the gums, while hard tissue refers to the teeth.

Common hard tissue procedures include:

  • Cavity detection. By looking for signs of tooth decay, lasers can find cavities early on.
  • preparation of the teeth and dental fillings. With laser treatments, conventional drills and local anesthesia are frequently unnecessary. Lasers can eliminate bacteria in a cavity, improving the long-term health of a tooth.
  • tooth sensitivity treatment. By sealing tubules on the tooth’s root, dental lasers can treat teeth that are sensitive to heat and cold.

Common soft tissue procedures include:

  • Treating a “gummy smile.” Lasers are used to reshape gum tissue associated with “gummy smile,” in which the gums’ length covers much of the tooth.
  • Crown lengthening. When placing dental restorations, this procedure helps to reshape the bone and gum tissue for a healthier tooth structure.
  • treating the tongue frenulum adnexa. A laser frenectomy may be helpful for people who have a thick or tight frenulum, which is the fold of skin under the tongue’s front portion that anchors to the floor of the mouth. Children who have a speech impediment, tongue tie, or difficulty breastfeeding may benefit from this procedure.
  • eliminating folds in soft tissue. Without pain or stitches, lasers can be used to remove soft tissue folds from loose dentures.

Other laser procedures include:

  • Viewing tissues. A dentist can safely view inside gum tissue or a tooth using optical coherence tomography.
  • getting benign tumors removed. The sides of the lips, cheeks, palate, and gums can all be treated with lasers to remove tumors without pain or sutures.
  • obstructive sleep apnea treatment. When the cause of sleep apnea is tissue overgrowth in the throat, lasers can reshape the throat and relieve related breathing issues.
  • Treatment for TMJ (temporomandibular joint). Laser therapy can help with joint pain and inflammation reduction.
  • Nerve regeneration. Scars, nerves, and damaged blood vessels can all be repaired using lasers.
  • Treating cold sores. Cold sore pain and healing time can both be sped up with laser therapy.
  • Teeth whitening. During teeth-whitening sessions, lasers hasten the bleaching process.

The cost of these types of laser treatments can vary depending on the procedure being done and the laser equipment being used. Because laser treatment typically takes fewer sessions to complete, they might be less expensive than non-laser treatment. Furthermore, dental insurance typically bases reimbursement costs on the actual treatment, rather than the technique, rather than the method used.

So, it’s likely that you’ll receive the same payment as you would for drilling and other procedures. To get the most precise information, it’s always crucial to inquire in advance about your specific policy.

What Takes Place During Dental Procedures Or Laser Gum Surgery?

You might be surprised to learn that the procedure for your laser dentistry appointment is very similar to other dental procedures, like tooth fillings. Although it might not be as much as you’re used to, you receive anesthesia. Some patients who experience anxiety might also be given a sedative.

In contrast to the drill, the laser won’t cause you to vibrate or feel uncomfortable while the procedure is being done. Any bleeding that happens is wiped away just like before. The dentist will use the laser to treat your problems while keeping your mouth propped open.

12. What is Laser Dentistry2

What Varieties Of Lasers Are Employed?

Depending on the procedure, dental professionals use either hard tissue or soft tissue lasers. Those who can use both types will do so.

Hard tissue lasers are capable of removing tooth structures. Through the interaction of water and a particular mineral present in teeth, their wavelengths are absorbed. These lasers are most frequently used to remove some tooth structures, prepare or shape teeth for composite bonding, and repair worn-down dental fillings.

Water and hemoglobin are two absorbent materials for soft tissue lasers. Red blood cells contain the protein hemoglobin.

With the help of these lasers, periodontitis can be treated, with bacteria being killed and tissue regrowth being sped up.

While soft tissue lasers are piercing the tissue, they seal blood vessels and nerve endings. Due to this, many people report feeling almost no pain following laser treatment. The lasers also facilitate quicker tissue healing.

  • Hard tissue lasers

Most often, teeth are made of hard tissues. These lasers can pierce bone and water due to their wavelength. They take out a very small number of teeth to reshape the tooth or get it ready for other procedures. They primarily deal with tooth sensitivity, cavity detection, and tooth preparation for dental fillings.

  • Soft tissue lasers

Water and hemoglobin are easily able to absorb the soft tissue laser’s wavelength. They are used to cut into soft tissues and seal the blood vessels that are punctured, as implied by their name. They are primarily employed to treat limited tongue movement, lengthen crowns for cosmetic reasons, and reshape gums.

Immediate Dentures: How Long Do They Take To Receive?

In order to create your immediate denture, the process for immediate dentures starts with taking measurements of your mouth and jaw. While the measurement process is fairly quick, the creation of your denture can take up to a month. When your denture is finished and ready, you can schedule an extraction date, and the new denture is inserted right away after the extraction.

What Dangers Are Related To Laser Dentistry?

Laser dentistry carries only a small amount of risk. Finding a qualified dental professional is crucial because tissue damage could result from using the incorrect wavelength or power level. Some service providers are also concerned that advertisements are exaggerating the need for laser therapy.

To protect your eyes from the laser, your dentist will advise you to wear special eyewear.

Need You Dentures Right Away?

Not everyone should get immediate dentures, and you might not be the best candidate in some circumstances. Immediate dentures are intended to replace missing teeth as soon as possible and can be beneficial for people who are anxious or have low self-esteem. However, some dental or medical issues, like severe gum disease or underlying medical conditions, can impair the body’s capacity to heal with immediate dentures, creating further issues. If you should get immediate dentures, your dentist will assess your general health, taking into account your emotional and mental well-being.

What To Expect During Laser Dentistry

The majority of laser dentistry procedures resemble their corresponding dental procedures quite closely. For instance, if your dentist is using a dental laser to fill a cavity, they will follow the same steps as they would for a conventional filling, but instead of using a drill, they will use a laser to remove the tooth decay.

Your dentist may still need to administer anesthetic to numb your mouth, depending on the procedure they’re performing. For instance, deeper cavities will require numbing shots while very shallow cavities might not.

Once your mouth has been prepared, your dentist will use a laser to carry out the procedure. They will use the laser to remove tooth decay in cases of cavities. As the laser vaporizes the tooth-decayed areas, you might hear popping noises.

Your dentist will fill the cavity after removing the decayed tooth in the same manner as they would with a dental drill. In most cases, they’ll use a composite resin for the filling. Even during laser procedures, dentists frequently need to shape and polish the composite using a drill.

In comparison to the same procedure performed using conventional methods, most patients report less pain following laser dental procedures. Your mouth’s nerves can heal more quickly with the aid of laser treatments, hastening the process of returning to normalcy.

How much will a laser filling set you back? A laser filling usually costs 1.5x to 2x as much as a traditional filling. The majority of the time, your dental insurance will cover a significant portion of the expense. To find out how much you will have to pay out of pocket, speak with your specific insurance company or dentist.

Bottom Line

Maintaining good dental health is essential. Dental health requires routine monitoring in the same way that physical health does. Adopt a dental routine that keeps your teeth and mouth clean if you want to live well and prevent any oral health problems. Here are some of the general things you should do:

Two times per day, brush your teeth. Brushing your teeth after breakfast is a better practice than doing it first thing in the morning. The best time to clear your mouth of any leftover food is right before bed.

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