Dr. Nancy A. Barnett
Dental lasers have come a long way since introduced in the early 1970’s. There are multiple laser types that work on different light wavelengths, tissue depths, power densities, whether pulsed or continuous in action and whether contact versus non-contact use. The lasers can also be used on both soft and hard tissues. The specific laser is based on the desired usage.
Soft issue laser activities can include gingivectomy/gingivoplasty, biopsy, gingival troughing, crown lengthening, subgingival curettage, frenectomies, operculectomies, apthous ulcers, vestibuloplasty, implant recovery, pocket decontamination and more.
Hard tissue laser activities can include removal of decay; laser induced analgesia, tooth desensitization and cavity preparation.
We have two lasers at the office, both are good for soft tissue therapies. One is specific for non-scalpel, no suture gum surgery. This non-cutting therapy is less painful and financially less expensive. The diode laser is great for soft tissue therapies, controlling bleeding when used in multiple therapies, and conservative soft tissue recountouring.
Laser therapy is here to stay in dentistry. There are advantages and disadvantages to their use, but they are a beneficial tool in the dental office and another option for dental care.