The science fiction future is here! Functional LASER technology has been around since 1960. However, today's LASER technology has evolved greatly over the past 50 years, and 21st century LASER technology has very little resemblance to its 1960's predecessors. LASERs are routinely now used in medicine and are becoming increasingly used by dentists. The majority of dentists have not yet embraced LASER technology, but this trend is expected to change in the coming years. At Beverlywood Dental, Dr. Prilutsky uses one of the newest LASERs on the market - the American-made Picasso ST Lite Laser by AMD Lasers™, LLC (Indianapolis, IN).
LASER applications in dentistry:
- An adjunct to periodontal (gum) therapy - following a scaling and root planing
(deep cleaning) procedure, disease-causing bacteria and diseased tissue are still present in the gum pockets. LASER can help reduce bacterial counts and remove diseased tissue from the gum pockets. This stimulates quicker healing and improved periodontal health.
- Gum troughing for crown impressions - a replacement for the traditional cord that is forced into the gum tissue to create impression space. Unlike the outdated cord technique, LASER troughing does not generally cause pain and discomfort, tearing of gum attachment, and gum recession.
- Gum trimming and recontouring - a replacement for the traditional scalpel blade and stitches. Unlike a scalpel, LASER does not cause excessive bleeding, the healing is much quicker, there is little or no discomfort, and the results are more predictable.
- Bleeding control - the LASER is capable of cauterizing broken micro blood vessels which may become damaged during dental procedures, thereby reducing or eliminating the need for stitches and injections of vasoconsticting medications.
- Biopsies, removal of growths, and trimming excess tissue - again, a replacement for the traditional scalpel blade and stitches.
- Exposure of unerupted teeth - yet another example of how the scalpel blade and stitches are obsolete.
- Implant recovery - exposing an implant after its healing period 4-6 months after placement has never been easier or less traumatic.
- Incision and drainage of abscess - this may promote healing and closure of the drainage site once the abscess is eliminated.
What do LASER treatments involve?
In some case, local anesthesia is administered to prevent discomfort during the LASER procedure. The patient, assistant, and Dr. Prilutsky will wear special protective glasses so as to prevent eye injury from the LASER light beam. LASER procedures typically require between 5 and 30 minutes, depending on the type of procedure and its complexity. No stitches are generally required, and you can expect to have little or no discomfort after the procedure is completed and the anesthetic wears off.
You will be given care instructions and may be given pain medications and antibiotics, depending on the type of procedure performed.