The use of laser for medical procedures has been around for many years. In dentistry, it is becoming more and more popular. Laser makes dental procedures faster, more effective, and more comfortable.
There are two main types of dental laser procedures, soft tissue and hard tissue. The former refers to the gums and the latter, the teeth.
– Crown lengthening: Crown lengthening involves the removal of parts of the gum to open up more of the tooth. This procedure aims to improve a “gummy smile” or prepare the tooth for reconstruction. The dentist uses laser to vaporize or cut the gum. Compared to traditional surgery, both procedure and healing take less time using laser.
– Frenectomy: Some children are born tongue-tied or lip-tied. These conditions can make breastfeeding difficult. In other cases, the condition may lead to other health issues such as dental decay and speech difficulties. Laser frenectomy releases the tongue or upper lip by vaporizing tissue. There is very little discomfort involved. Risk of infection is minimal because laser sterilizes at touch.
– Removal of soft-tissue folds: Ill-fitting dentures can cause the formation of soft-tissue folds known as epulis. Laser can remove these in a pain-free manner, and without suturing.
– Early detection of cavity: Dental laser tools can diagnose cavities including those that are hidden at the top of the tooth. A healthy tooth allows light to pass easily. If by-products of tooth-decay are present, the tooth will reflect light. The device will then detect it.
– Treatment for hypersensitivity: Dentin tubules are microscopic channels responsible for carrying sensations to the inside of a tooth. By sealing these tubules, laser provides a pain-free and immediate cure for sensitive teeth.
– Dental fillings and tooth preparation: Dentists often use a drill with metal alloy bit to remove decay, polish fillings, and alter prostheses. Yet, this tool causes pain and vibration. Dental laser can do the same procedure with high precision, but without any discomfort.
– Teeth whitening: Laser boosts the effectiveness of bleach used to whiten teeth. It also speeds up the process.
– Optical coherence tomography: This imaging technique provides doctors a safe way to view the interior of tooth or gum tissue.
– Treatment of sleep apnea: If caused by tissue overgrowth in the throat area, laser can reshape the throat and get rid of associated breathing difficulties.
– Temporomandibular joint treatment. Laser penetrates deep into the temporomandibular joint and the tissues surrounding it. It decreases inflammation, producing almost instant relief. It also promotes healing.
– Nerve regeneration: Photobiomodulation aids in regeneration of damaged scars, nerves, and blood vessels. This is also known as low-level laser therapy.
– Speeding up of healing and reduction of pain from cold sores.
– Painless and suture-free removal of benign tumors.