Lasers have been safely used for decades in a variety of products and technologies, including:
- Eye surgery technologies
- Tattoo removal systems
- Hair replacement procedures
Lasers have also been increasingly used lately in the field of dentistry. Laser dentistry has been around for over two decades for the treatment of a range of dental conditions and diseases. It is a preferred treatment method for the number of conditions because it is a precise and minimally invasive procedure that speeds recovery times.
Laser dentistry is useful for some situations involving periodontal disease treatment, fillings and root canal therapy. It is also used to perform some biopsies and cosmetic dental procedures instead of relying upon manual scalpels.
Soft Tissue Applications
Gummy Smile Treatment: This is when a person has a large and visible amount of gum tissue surrounding their teeth. Your dentist can use a laser for this condition to remove gum tissue.
Gingivectomy: Also known as gum reshaping or gum contouring, the gingivectomy is a cosmetic procedure involving the reshaping of the gum line through the removal of gum tissue.
Dental Crown Lengthening: Before undergoing some types of dental restorations, such as a dental implant or crown, crown lengthening may be required. This involves the reshaping of underlying gum tissue and bone.
Gum Disease Treatment: Laser dentistry is helpful in preventing some types of gum surgery. Lasers are also useful in providing a painless sterilization of deep pockets for the elimination of bacteria causing periodontal disease. Dental lasers are also useful for relieving gum inflammation associated with some types of periodontal disease.
Hard Tissue Procedures
Hypersensitivity treatment: If a patient should develop a cavity, or have extremely thin tooth enamel, tooth sensitivity is often a result. Dental lasers can be useful in sealing tubules on the root of a tooth, reducing sensitivity.
Tooth decay treatment: Some dental lasers have the ability to detect tooth decay in its earliest stages. They can be useful for removing tooth decay without the dentist needing to use a dental drill.
Root canal therapy: Lasers can be used to gain access to the root canal and remove damaged tissue, as well as helping with cleaning, sterilizing, and reshaping the canal before filling.
The Bottom Line
Laser dentistry has been safely and effectively used since the 1990s. It provides a minimally invasive and less painful alternative to many conventional dental treatments and procedures.
In addition to helping treat soft tissue and hard tissue conditions, lasers are useful in removing benign tumors, regenerating nerves, and reducing inflammation, as well as relieving jaw pain and helping whiten teeth.