About Laser Dentistry
Modern advances to dental technology have provided Laser Smile Studio in Denton, TX with an unparalleled opportunity to offer dental services in a minimally invasive, reduced pain manner. Our board-certified dentist, Dr. Todd McCracken, is certified and skilled in the art of Laser Dentistry. The use of lasers in dentistry is a relatively new concept. As such, very few dentists are qualified to offer this innovative service. Lasers can be used to carefully and effectively treat a variety of common dental issues, such as gum disease, tooth decay and cold sores. Although some patients may require traditional dental treatments for certain reasons, most patients are eligible for laser dentistry services.
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What to Expect with Laser Dentistry
Although some cases still may require traditional surgery for gum disease treatment, most people are eligible for the Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure, which is a less invasive and more comfortable experience for patients.
When it comes to gum disease treatment, invasiveness and recession are two of the key differences between laser gum surgery and traditional surgery. In traditional surgery, the dentist uses a scalpel to peel the gum tissue back so he or she can sanitize the periodontal pocket and shrink the pocket depth. The dentist reduces the pocket depth by cutting away the infected tissue. Reattaching the gum tissue to the root surface of the tooth often requires bone grafting or membrane materials as well.
LANAP in Denton, TX on the other hand, is a minimally invasive surgery that does not necessitate the use of scalpels or sutures. Choosing a LANAP certified dentist for gum disease surgery such as Dr. Todd McCracken ensures that your procedure will be far less painful than a traditional gum disease treatment. With LANAP, the Dr. McCracken does not have to cut the gum tissue because of the cutting-edge PerioLase® MVP-7™ laser technology. This technology operates on a wavelength that can differentiate between the healthy gum tissue and diseased tissue, allowing him to remove the harmful bacteria from the gums without cutting.
LANAP gives us the ability to possibly save loose teeth that would have needed to be removed otherwise. The steps of LANAP surgery include:
- Pockets are measured
- Laser is used to remove bacteria
- The Calculus Is Removed
- Laser Is Used to Create A Clot
- The Gum Tissue Is Compressed
- The Bite is Adjusted
The Benefits of Lasers
Laser technology is quiet, precise and gentle which makes it the preferred method for dental treatment in patients who may feel fear when considering the sound of the dental drill. Using the concentrated laser energy, the lasers can remove decay and sculpt the tooth, in some situations eliminating the need for a drill when treating a cavity. In addition, the precision offered by the laser technology often means faster treatment, which can reduce the amount of visits required to treat cavities, cold sores or gum disease. Most procedures performed with laser technology do not require anesthetic and will leave the mouth feeling nearly normal, following the procedure.
The benefits of laser treatments extend beyond simple cavity repair and the elimination of cold sores and provide an invaluable method for performing root canals, treating gum disease, and repairing or restoring previously placed dental implants. Laser technology simplifies surgical procedures, as the laser is more precise than a scalpel and actually helps to quickly coagulate the blood. This often reduces the need for sutures. In addition, dental surgeries performed with laser technology are often less painful for the patient, with minimal discomfort following the procedure and a lower risk of post-procedure infection.
LANAP vs Gum Surgery
Periodontal disease affects millions of Americans, yet many people postpone or avoid seeking gum disease treatment because of the innate invasiveness of traditional surgery. This trend is especially disconcerting given the link between periodontal disease and other serious health problems like diabetes, stroke, heart disease, and low birth weight babies. It is imperative to seek gum disease treatment as soon as possible to preserve your oral as well as overall health and well-being.
Fortunately, advancements in technology now enable dentists like Dr. Todd McCracken in Denton, Texas, to remove the bacteria without cutting or removing healthy gum tissue. Dental professionals who offer the Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure use the PerioLase® MVP-7™, the only FDA cleared laser, to achieve this feat. Laser gum surgery is a less invasive and less painful gum disease treatment option that requires far less healing time than traditional surgery because of LANAP’s ability to target only the infected gum tissue. In fact, patients can return to work and resume their daily activities immediately after the procedure, which can usually be completed in two visits that last about two hours each.
Prior to LANAP, a common option for gum disease treatment was traditional surgery, sometimes referred to as flap surgery. Flap surgery involves the amputation of the gum tissue and the reshaping of the bone. When flap surgery is used by the dentist for gum disease treatment, the gum is lifted and rolled back to allow the doctor to remove tarter and diseased gum tissue. Following this step, it is often necessary to plane and reshape the bone to decrease pits and uneven areas where bacteria tend to grow. The final step in traditional surgery used by the dentist for gum disease treatment entails the suturing of the gum flap in a position that reduces the periodontal pocket depth. Since dentists use scalpels and stitches when performing this gum disease treatment, the process is inherently more painful and uncomfortable than laser gum surgery and the healing time is significantly longer.
State-of-the-art Laser protocols, LANAP™ and LAPIP™, can be used perform a large variety of common dental issues in a minimally painful manner which in turn, can reduce the anxiety that a patient may have previously felt about dental care. Dr. McCracken feels that offering patients solutions that are not as intimidating or as uncomfortable as traditional dentistry options will improve the likelihood that they will keep regularly scheduled dental visits in the future thus improving their overall health.
Laser Dentistry Treatment Aftercare
Laser technology has been proven to reduce swelling, inflammation, bleeding and discomfort during and following a dental procedure. Often times, patients heal more quickly following a laser dentistry procedure than they may after traditional treatment. Because of these factors, aftercare which may have traditionally included caring for sutures, changing out gauze, or taking pain relievers is usually not necessary. After a laser dentistry procedure, Dr. McCracken will provide the patient with specific aftercare instructions, but it is always important to maintain a proper oral hygiene routine at all times to help prevent plaque build-up and ward off decay causing bacteria.
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The Laser Difference
Laser Smile Studio serves patients from Denton, Corinth, Lake Dallas and surrounding areas. If you feel that you would benefit from the use of laser dentistry, we invite you to give us a call today.