You step into a dentist’s office, and immediately that office aroma hits you. The unique combination of the smells of dental and cleaning products and “tooth dust” swirls in the air, and memories of your last dental appointment come flooding back. In the distance, you hear the shrill of the dental drill, and your heart starts beating faster.
If this scenario is all too familiar, chances are you are among the estimated 50 to 80% of American adults who suffer from dental anxiety. Wouldn’t it be nice if the whole dental experience could be different? Minimal discomfort. No scary tools like scalers and drills. And no gigantic needle to numb you before a procedure.
Sounds like wishful thinking, huh? Well, it’s not, says our own Dr. Marcano. In this blog, he shares his thoughts on how laser dentistry can help you get over your fear of the dentist.
Undoubtedly you’ve heard of using lasers in medicine for general surgical procedures or eye surgery like LASIK. But what’s laser dentistry? Similar to other areas of medicine, laser dentistry taps into laser technology to perform a variety of dental procedures. The real game-changer is that the technology undermines most of the reasons patients fear the dentist – anxiety over pain, disturbing sounds, and worrying about needles and infections.
Although lasers have been part of the dental profession for decades, laser dentistry has become increasingly popular more recently as patients learn about the benefits and more and more dental uses become mainstream. In the beginning, it was all about lasers as cutting tools for gums and other soft tissue. Then in 1997, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved lasers for treating tooth decay. Now the FDA has approved more than 20 uses of lasers in dentistry.
Each situation unfolds differently depending on the procedure being executed. However, the basic scenario is the same. A specially trained dentist uses a hand-held laser device as a tool, which emits focused light energy. This light energy can be used on soft and hard tissue to cut or contour with exact precision.
Here at Orlando Center for Cosmetic Dentistry, we use the Waterlase™ by Biolase® laser system to perform procedures such as treating cavities, gum contouring, crown lengthening, TMJ, tooth sensitivity, cold sores, oral abscesses, benign tumors, and even obstructive sleep apnea. The sheer versatility and effectiveness of laser dentistry are impressive, but providing a more comfortable experience for the patient is equally impressive. The Waterlase™ system taps into the power of laser energy while combining water and air throughout procedures. This not only hydrates your teeth and gums throughout the treatment but also protects from the heat of the laser, resulting in a more comfortable, virtually painless experience.
Since laser dentistry provides a more comfortable experience for the patient, administering anesthesia for dental procedures is greatly lessened. The Waterlase™ system enables us to perform many dental procedures with minimal or no anesthetic. Say goodbye to that big needle and the annoying drill.
The fear factors that laser dentistry dismantles can truly change the typical dental experience. However, the fact that the technology lessens inflammation and risk of infection is icing on the cake. When a dentist uses a dental laser instead of traditional dental tools like a scalpel or scaling and root planing tool, the treatment results in less bleeding and exposure to toxins, thereby reducing a patient’s risk of developing an infection -- definitely a win-win.
If you need dental work and what to learn if laser dentistry is right for you, book a consultation at Orlando Center for Cosmetic Dentistry by clicking the online booking tool or calling the office today at 407-855-1471.