As a biological office, we value the human element of dental care. We customize treatment to each patient’s needs and take a conservative approach, favoring the least invasive procedures to meet those needs.
Ironically, advanced technology is one of the things that helps us provide this kind of care – holistic, biocompatible dentistry that supports whole body health.
And that technology is always changing, always improving. Traditional film x-rays gave way to higher quality digital imaging, including CBCT scans that allow us to view the oral cavity in three dimensions. Computer-aided design and manufacture (CAD-CAM) revolutionized the creation of dental restorations. Biocompatible materials have been developed that can replace toxic ones such as mercury amalgam.
One of the newest dental technologies we’ve brought into our own practice is our Fotona LightWalker laser. And it’s pretty special.
One thing that makes it so special is that it combines two types of laser – Er:YAG and Nd:YAG – into a single system. Each has a different wavelength and these interact with tissues differently, making the LightWalker extremely versatile. The Nd:YAG laser is suitable for soft tissue treatments, while Er:YAG is mainly for removing hard tissues – and doing so more smoothly and cleanly than any regular hand piece could. The LightWalker is extraordinarily precise.
But their precision is just part of why lasers are so useful in dentistry. They also support good, healthy healing. They help disinfect the tissues we’re working on, contributing to a much lower risk of infection or other post-op complications. Their biostimulation also helps jumpstart the healing process.
And because the laser itself makes no direct contact, it makes procedures much more comfortable for you, with no unpleasant sensations such as pressure, vibration, or noise that you can get with conventional surgical tools.
Even better, we can adjust the unit for each patient’s needs, allowing us to customize your treatment more than ever. Fotona has even developed specific pulse modes and delivery systems to optimize the laser-tissue interaction during treatments. This means we can give you a treatment that’s just right for you.
Since introducing the laser to our practice earlier this year, we’ve used it mainly for surgical procedures, such as tooth extractions, the removal of the periodontal ligament, and thoroughly cleaning and disinfection the socket the socket – essential steps to help prevent cavitations. Using the laser this way ensures better healing through complementary infrared wavelengths.
Similarly, we use the laser to treat cavitations – areas of dead and decaying tissue that are often hidden by healthy looking gum tissue. Although there may be no oral symptoms, the toxins produced by these hidden infections can spread throughout the body and contribute to a wide range of systemic illnesses. Disinfection is precisely what is needed, along with removing the infected tissues themselves.
After surgeries, we also use the LightWalker for photobiomodulation – basically, UV light therapy. Once the site has been sutured, a low level light therapy (LLLT) laser is used to penetrate the soft and hard tissues to reduce post-operative pain and speed healing. Its effects are anti-inflammatory, biostimulant, and regenerative.
Over time, we will undoubtedly be adding new uses for our LightWalker, such as non-surgical periodontal treatment and treating decay. There’s just so much it can do.
Above all, it lets us customize your treatments more than ever, while also providing a better, more comfortable experience for you, with less time in the chair, less post-op pain, and (aided and abetted by two other important tools in our surgical kit: PRF and ozone) quicker, better healing.
PS: Just as we went to post this, we were notified of new research in the Journal of the American Dental Association which confirms that LLLT “may improve postoperative pain and wound healing after tooth extractions.” You can read more about the study here.