When people hear the term “laser dentist,” they may ask questions such as “What does that mean?” or “Is it safe?” Other people may envision a laser out of a science fiction film in which a laser dentist will use a colorful beam of energy that can vaporize enemies. In reality, laser dentistry is incredibly safe and painless, when it comes to dental procedures. Dental lasers have more benefits that help revolutionize dentistry in our Sunnyvale office.
What exactly are dental lasers?
The American Dental Association, ADA, explains on mouthhealthy.org that “A laser is a device that emits light.” The light that the device emits can help with a variety of functions in professional dental care from tooth whitening to surgery. While the description of a laser may not sound complex, all patients will wear eye protection when the dentist uses the laser.
The Academy of Laser Dentistry, ALD, explains that “Some lasers are used for surgery, some to cure restorative materials and enhance tooth bleaching, and others to remove tooth structure for elimination of disease and restoration.” In fact, “Family and guests in the dental operatory at the time of your laser treatment may also be asked to wear protective eyeglasses,” the ALD states. This is a safety precaution, but not a reason for alarm as the laser dentist will provide the protective glasses.
A laser dentist will use a different type of laser for a specific procedure and will have special training. Patients do not need to harbor fear or dental anxiety over the possible use of lasers in a procedure. The ALD states a laser dentist “knows which types of patient care are more patient friendly with a laser than with alternative traditional methods.” A laser dentist can use the laser to focus on very small areas in the mouth for treatment. There are other benefits a laser dentist has to offer patients.
Other benefits of laser dentistry
One aspect of any dental visit that few people enjoy is the cleaning and scraping with metallic tools. While the metallic tools are a necessity to ensure clean and healthy teeth, patients may still dislike the experience. For patients who experience dental anxiety, laser dentistry may be the best option. Some benefits of laser dentistry include:
- No whirring sounds from a dental drill
- No need to use metal tools to scrape or clean the teeth
- Some surgical procedures may not require stitches after using a dental laser
- Minimized bleeding, possible damage to surrounding tissue, and risk of bacterial infections
- Wounds in the mouth will heal faster
- Patients may not need to use anesthesia in certain situations with laser dentistry
Patients struggling with dental anxiety will be able to sit back and relax during a procedure from a laser dentist. For many, the sound of a dental drill or other tools can frighten and make a dental checkup uncomfortable. Patients who have dental anxiety will attempt to avoid dental checkups and risk more danger to their teeth. For patients who fear the use of a dental laser, the laser dentist may not even use the laser for a long period of time during the appointment.
“Depending on your treatment needs, your dentist may use the laser for a long period of time or possibly only for brief moments,” the ALD explains. In the cases where a patient is going through a teeth whitening procedure, “Laser energy enhances the effect of tooth bleaching agents for a faster and more effective result,” the ALD adds.
If you or a loved one have dental anxiety or feel a need to use dental lasers in the next dental procedure, call (408) 648-2137 and schedule an appointment. A laser dentist will know the best method and type of laser to use for your needs.
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