Lasers are devices that emit light through "optical amplification", allowing the light to be focused to a very tight spot. In essence, they are hi-tech surgical cutting tools.
Diode lasers (in particular) have become an important tool for advanced dental care procedures. While lasers have many great uses in dentistry, there use can be summarized into two main categories:
1) To treat periodontal disease: the laser probe can be introduced into pockets of bacteria to clean and detoxify the area.
2) For soft tissue surgical procedures: the diode laser is a minimally invasive technology that offers great advantages over a conventional scalpel; such as reduced bleeding and inflamation, reduced healing time, less scarring, and less post-procedure pain.
The use of the diode laser in dentistry is significant.
Conventional scalpel incisions leave blood vessels open and sensitive nerve endings exposed, leading to the body's release of histamine into the surgical site, causing inflammation and postoperative pain. Blood also spills into the surgical site, making it difficult for the doctor to see.
The diode laser coagulates and cauterizes the treatment area as it cuts, leading to immediate hemostasis, rapid healing, and reduced swelling.
Dr. Bell's laser use includes (but is not limited to):
- crown preparations
- implant procedures
- soft tissue recontouring in the "smile zone"
- to stop the migration of gingival tissue
- to destroy lesions