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Laser Dentistry for Advanced Dentistry Techniques

Lasers were introduced to dentistry in the 1990s, but the American Dental Association, ADA, has not offered any specific lasers their seal of approval yet. However, the ADA is looking to the laser technology to help advance dentistry techniques and treatments. Lasers can be used to help dentists with precision and lasers can be used to help patients by minimizing how invasive procedures are.

Laser Dentistry

How Laser Dentistry is Used

Lasers can be used for a number of dental procedures to help prevent problems and restore oral health after problems arise. The more common type of lasers used include hot lasers or cutting lasers. Dentists use lasers to help address:

  • Gum Reshaping / Gum Contouring- Dentists can help reduce excess gum or help create a more symmetrical gum line for your smile.
  • Crown Lengthening- Dentists can remove excess gum to help expose more tooth to help you have less of a gummy smile.
  • Enamel Contouring- Dentists can improve the appearance of your tooth’s enamel with shaping and shaving.
  • Periodontal Treatment- If you suffer from gum disease and have pockets of bacteria or plaque causing inflammation or infection, the laser can kill the bacteria to stop the infection.
  • Tooth Decay- Lasers can be used instead of drills by dentists to remove the part of your tooth affected by decay. Dentists can also use the laser in the restoration portion of treatment after the decay removal to set the filling material.
  • Soft Tissue Procedures- When the dentist needs to remove a cyst or perhaps obtain a small amount of tissue to biopsy when the dentist is performing the oral cancer screening.
  • Teeth Whitening- Some whitening procedures call for the dentist to use a laser instead of applying harsh chemicals to the tooth. Not all the special lights used for whitening procedures are lasers and dentists are cautious to not harm the teeth or their enamel when considering which whitening technique to employ on you.

Laser Dentistry Expectations

All lasers use light as the form of energy to cause a reaction. In the case of dental lasers, the light is used to cut or kill tissue, like trimming gums or killing bacteria. In the case of other technology, drills use movement and vibration to eradicate bacteria and break up plaque. When the dentist chooses to use a laser in your treatment plan, you know your dentist is using the most modern approach to helping you achieve strong oral health. Lasers allow the dentists to precisely work on small areas that need attention without affecting other healthy areas.


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Benefits of Laser Dentistry

If the dentist chooses to use a laser over traditional methods, then the laser will yield the same results but in a more effective way. In the case that the dentist is using the laser to cut over a scalpel, a scalpel will require sutures. The sutures can lead to inflammation and longer healing period. When the dentist uses a laser, no sutures are required and healing time is reduced.

In the case that the dentist is using a drill to treat your teeth, the sensation and noise causes anxiety and unease in most patients. The laser does not have the same impact either with the sensation in your mouth or the noise generated on your ears.

In the case that the dentist is using the laser to cut away tissue, the laser can reduce bleeding versus a scalpel and can reduce the pain you experience. If the dentist uses a laser, you may find that you are less likely to need anesthesia than without the laser.

Because of the nature of the laser, when the laser is used on the soft tissue in your mouth, it leaves behind a sterile tissue surface. In the case of using a scalpel, ensuring that the scalpel and sutures are sterile is easy for your dentist to ensure, but to keep that area sterile is more difficult due to your introduction of food and drink to a healing wound. The laser cauterizes as it painless cuts the tissue, closing the cut to minimize your bleeding.

Despite the amazing benefits that come along with lasers in dentistry they are not yet perfect and may not be the best choice for your treatment plan to address your specific dental needs. It is best to talk to the dentist about what your treatment plan options are before finalizing your plan and moving forward.

After Care For Laser Dentistry Treatments

During the days and weeks following the more invasive appointments, eating softer foods will keep you comfortable. Once the healing process takes hold, you can gradually include harder and more abrasive foods. Once your dentist has completed work on with the dental laser, and you are fully healed, you need to take care of your teeth and your jaw to keep your overall health strong.

Costs of Laser Dentistry

Costs for each procedure vary depending on how long the procedure takes, what materials the procedure requires, how many visits the procedure requires, and the amount of work the dentist is required to do. It may surprise you to know, but dental insurance may cover some of the costs for these as well as elective procedures as they lead to improved overall dental health and long term benefits. If you do not have dental insurance coverage or you have any questions about payment options for your treatment plan, you are more than welcome to talk to our staff at any time. Your budget’s health is just as important as your mouth’s health.


High Quality Care You Can Trust

At Edgerton & Glenn Cosmetic and General Dentistry. We strive to build relationships with our patients. You are more than just teeth, you are our patient and friend and we want to help you to achieve and maintain oral health as best we can. We look forward to meeting you and talking about what is best for you and your mouth. Please contact us to set up a Laser Dentistry appointment at (910) 256-9230.