Traditional and Technology: To Each Its Own
Tooth decay is the most prevalent health hazard in the world today, affecting all age ranges without regard for socio-demographic barriers. As such, it should translate to as many dental visits and treatments provided by the concerned health providers.
Unfortunately, majority of affected people do not readily seek dental treatment at first instance or go for regular check-ups, or be at least compliant to instructions. And, hence, the prevalence of the condition.
Perhaps one reason for the lapses is a painful or unsettling experience with the dental drill, a very common phobia. The purpose of this electronic device is to remove decay from affected teeth; when in use it makes a high-pitch noise and patients feel its vibrations as well. Nonetheless, drills are still the most inexpensive way to remove tooth decay and many dentists consider them essential to their armamentarium.
The dental laser has been considered as alternative to the drill. FDA-approved and ADA-endorsed with seal of approval, the laser is accepted as a safe technology. Using amplified light as the form of energy, the laser can cut through teeth and tissue. The light is adjusted at different wavelengths for different applications, such as when removing tooth decay, as whitening enhancement, when cutting bone, or detecting cavities. In practice, most dentists use lasers only for tooth decay, lesion removal, and gum problems like for reshaping and re-contouring gum tissue.
What are the advantages of dental lasers? No pain is associated with lasers, in fact, no anesthesia is necessary. Target areas are pinpointed excluding surrounding areas. They don’t cause vibrations, while bleaching and swelling are greatly reduced, hence, more comfortable for patients.
However, laser dentistry is not for all dental situations, such as very large cavities, cavities with previous fillings, and is not used for shaping or polishing fillings.
In Pursuit of Patient Safety and Comfort in Bellevue
Over at Overlake Dental, we do a lot of laser dentistry where indicated. In the hands of our expert professional, lasers are precise and safe instruments. Consult with us about lasers and its many applications, not just with tooth decay.