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 Gum Therapy
Periodontal disease is a disease that starts with the accumulation of plaque, tartar, and bacteria. In response to these irritants, the body produces an inflammatory response that starts to destroy gum and bone tissue. The longer the irritants stay, the more damage is caused.
So first it is important to remove the plaque and tartar that accumulate above and below the gum line. This is achieved with the scaling and root planing (deep cleaning) procedure. Once this is completed, much diseased tissue and bacteria remain in the gum pockets. We rely on the body to eliminate the remaining diseased tissue and bacteria after the deep cleaning, but this does not always occur.
This is where the LASER comes into play. The LASER is used as an adjunct to periodontal therapy following a scaling and root planing (deep cleaning) procedure. LASER can help reduce bacterial counts and remove diseased tissue from the gum pockets. This stimulates quicker healing and improved periodontal health.
What does LASER gum therapy 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 gum therapy typically requires between 15 and 30 minutes, depending on the extent of the periodontal disease. 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.