Soft Tissue Laser Dentistry
What is soft tissue laser dentistry? Cold sores can present an ugly, unsightly sore in, on and around the lip regions of the mouth. Soft tissue lasers can be used to treat gently around the mouth and other sensitive areas in the region like gums. Laser treatments can be used for gum diseases, on patients with gum and teeth sensitivity, and for ulcer and cold sore treatments that can immediate relief.
Laser use in dentistry has its advantages:
- Treatment will not harm dental hard tissues
- Laser therapy shouldn’t injure the dental pulp
- Minimal local anesthetics are typically used, and most patients prefer to receive some form of anesthesia
- Diode lasers are safe for use around dental implants
- Safe around PFM and full-metal crowns, and gold alloy and amalgam restorations
- Soft tissue removal with a soft tissue laser is very precise and predictable
- Stitches and periodontal packs may not be required, which can be advantageous for pediatric use or for special needs patients
Different Types of Soft Tissue Dental Lasers
Lasers have been used in dentistry for approximately two decades and are suitable for multiple procedures, including soft tissue dental treatments. Lasers for soft tissue treatments are available can be used for procedures that would otherwise use electrosurgery techniques or a scalpel. Laser dentistry generates very little or zero heat and is a far gentler form of surgery. Dentists can use these soft tissue laser treatments for the effective, precise, and safe removal of soft tissues when needed.
Uses for soft tissue lasers include: gingivectomies and periodontal treatments, frenectomies, ablating and removing aphthous ulcers, gingival contouring, crown lengthening, troughing, soft tissue incisions, and removing soft tissue lesions. Can also be used as an alternative to retraction cord to isolate margin prep for crown work.
Patients that are Anxious about Dental Work
Laser therapy can be used for patients that might be anxious about dental treatments. After soft tissue laser treatments, patients might experience reduced post-operative pain, gingival swelling, and discomfort. There may be occasions when other techniques, such as electrosurgery, may be quicker, but laser treatments tend to be more comfortable and less traumatic for the anxious patient. Knowing that their dental practitioner uses a state-of-the-art technique and approach to dental care can also be reassuring. Soft tissue treatment are safe for young children and infants who would otherwise require a general anesthetic.
Treating Patients with Periodontal Disease
One of the most effective uses of soft tissue dental lasers is in treating patients with periodontal disease. During therapeutic treatments, the laser energy is transmitted through a thin fiber and easily penetrates deep into periodontal pockets. The energy produced by the laser is readily absorbed by hemoglobin, melanin, and other chromophores found in periodontal disease, so treatment explicitly targets unhealthy tissues. Non-surgical treatment usually requires scaling and root planing to remove irritants from tooth root surfaces and decrease the inflammatory response. Using scaling and root planing with laser therapy increases treatment efficacy. Gingival Contouring with Soft Tissue Lasers
Gingival contouring using a soft tissue laser can provide a more comfortable treatment for the patient. Using a diode laser allows the clinician to quickly and precisely remove excess tissue with minimal or no bleeding, post-operative pain, or swelling. Laser energy cauterizes and seals capillaries, achieving hemostasis and preventing edema. Tissue damage is minimal, because a continuous sweeping motion is used during treatment. Healing occurs in a matter of days, and patients generally report low levels of discomfort during the healing process.
Benefits of Using Laser Surgery for Frenum Removal
Labial frenal attachments can inhibit lip movements, and sometimes the tissue can prevent the closure of a diastema during orthodontic treatment. Traditional frenectomies require the mechanical excision of the frenum, placement of stitches, and often considerable post-operative discomfort. With soft tissue laser therapy, the frenal attachment can be gently ablated before the laser coagulates and cauterizes the surgery site.
For more information, talk to Dr. Nora Taha when in office or call our office today!