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Laser Gum Treatment



Introduction to Laser Periodontic Treatment
Meet Our New Laser
LANAP (Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure): Laser Periodontal Therapy™
How do patients benefit from LANAP Laser Therapy?
The LANAP Process
LASER PERIODONTAL THERAPY™: A Life Changing Treatment
Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure (LANAP)
Ask Dr. Wagenberg: FAQs on Laser Periodontal Treatment

The newest technology available for periodontal patient care is now available at Periodontics & Implant Dentistry PA. After much research into the world of laser periodontal treatment, Dr. Barry Wagenberg has acquired and has been extensively trained on the latest generation of Nd:YAG laser.


Introduction to Laser Periodontic Treatment


The Millennium PerioLase® was developed specifically to treat periodontal disease using LANAP (Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure). Like LASIK surgery for the eyes, this patented and FDA-approved laser therapy allows us to treat periodontal patients with a minimally invasive, breakthrough procedure, which in many cases eliminates the need for conventional blade and suture surgery.


Meet Our New Laser


The PerioLase® from Millennium Dental Technologies is the first and only laser designed with the needs of the periodontal patient in mind. This Nd:YAG laser is equipped with all the unique features necessary to perform Laser Periodontal Therapy™. It has a full complement of new soft tissue laser treatment options. Manufactured by Millennium Dental Technologies, the PerioLase® is not only the first laser in dentistry to utilize digital technology for enhanced performance and reliability, but is also built on the world’s most widely used dental laser platform. While early dental lasers were very limited in what they could do, The PerioLase® can now be used effectively to reach down into the pockets to help eliminate inflamed tissue and destroy pathogenic bacteria.


LANAP (Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure): Laser Periodontal Therapy™


The FDA-Approved and patented LANAP laser therapy is a pocket reduction procedure that reduces pockets by establishing a new connective tissue attachment to the tooth at a coronal level. The LANAP procedure provides the ideal situation in which new bone, cementum, and periodontal ligament can form on root surfaces that were diseased before treatment began. This is a minimally invasive periodontal procedure like no other. In most instances, treatment with the LANAP laser eliminates the need for conventional cut and suture periodontal surgery, also referred to as flap and osseous surgery.

 

Approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2004, this pulsing laser can distinguish between healthy and diseased gums by color. The infected tissue, which is has a darker pigment than healthy tissue, and bacteria are “zapped” away by the laser, leaving behind only healthy gum tissue. LANAP then helps connective tissue and bone form between the gums and teeth, according to a study in the December 2007 issue of the International Journal of Periodontics and Restorative Dentistry. The laser’s heat also seals the gums with a “thermal blood clot” which creates a physical barrier, blocking any bacteria or tissue that could recreate a gum pocket.


How do patients benefit from LANAP Laser Therapy?



Laser surgery provides another option for patients who have already undergone a scaling and root planing procedure without sufficient results. Normally traditional blade surgery would be indicated for such a patient; however, with the addition of the PerioLase® to our treatment armamentarium, patients have available to them a realistic alternative with comparable results. The benefits of LANAP™ include less pain, less gum recession, decreased bleeding, swelling and root sensitivity, and maybe the most important benefit, less downtime after treatment. An added benefit of laser surgery is the antibacterial effect that helps disinfect the periodontal pockets.

 

Laser treatment is also beneficial for patients who have medical problems requiring medications such as aspirin, Plavix, and Coumadin. Since LANAP® causes much less bleeding than traditional surgeries; patients do not have to discontinue using these life-saving medications prior to surgery. Patients with advanced periodontal disease who take bisphosphonate medications such as Fosamax can avoid having extractions because even teeth with a poor prognosis can often be saved with this life-changing procedure. This is especially important because studies have shown that Fosamax can lead to osteonecrosis of the jaw following tooth extraction. Call your specialized periodontist today to see if you are ready to experience the latest technology has to offer.

 


The LANAP Process


The PerioLase®‘s fiber optic tip removes diseased tissue and kills bacteria in the periodontal pockets while leaving healthy tissue relatively untouched. Ultrasonic scalers and/or hand instruments are employed to remove calculus deposits that were loosened by the laser’s first pass. A second pass is made with the laser using a different setting to kill bacteria in the bottom of the pockets and on the bone. Formation of a sticky fibrin clot is also stimulated by the second pass of the PerioLase®. This clot seals off the pockets, allowing bone and other soft tissue and ideal environment for regeneration.

 

The LANAP Process can be broken down into seven simple steps:

  1. A perio probe identifies excessive pocket depths.
  2. The initial pass with the laser removes bacteria and diseased tissue.
  3. An ultrasonic scaler and/or special hand instruments remove root surface tartar that was loosened by the initial laser pass.
    With a second pass of the laser, blood clot stimulation occurs in the pocket to keep the epithelium from growing back into those areas.
  4. Reattachment of soft tissue and bone to the clean root surfaces is initiated.
  5. The patient’s bite is adjusted to eliminate bite trauma.
  6. New connective tissue attachment and bone growth occur.


LASER PERIODONTAL THERAPY™: A Life Changing Treatment


For patients who are concerned about traditional cut and suture surgery to treat periodontal disease, the new laser treatment can be a life-changing event! Teeth can be saved, natural smiles can be preserved and some potentially life-threatening systemic effects of bacteria from gum disease left untreated can be avoided. Laser treatment gives patients a new option.

 

If you would like to find out more about using laser therapy to treat periodontal disease and to save your teeth and smile, please call Dr. Barry Wagenberg at Periodontics & Implant Dentistry PA 973-994-9995/ 908-245-3500 or submit your questions online, utilizing one of the appointment request forms distributed on our website.


Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure (LANAP)


The FDA-Approved and patented LANAP laser therapy is a pocket reduction procedure that reduces pockets by establishing a new connective tissue attachment to the tooth at a coronal level. The LANAP procedure provides the ideal situation in which new bone, cementum, and periodontal ligament can form on root surfaces that were diseased before treatment began. This is a minimally invasive periodontal procedure like no other. In most instances, treatment with the LANAP laser eliminates the need for conventional cut and suture periodontal surgery, also referred to as flap and osseous surgery.

 

Approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2004, this pulsing laser can distinguish between healthy and diseased gums by color. The infected tissue, which is has a darker pigment than healthy tissue, and bacteria are “zapped” away by the laser, leaving behind only healthy gum tissue. LANAP then helps connective tissue and bone form between the gums and teeth, according to a study in the December 2007 issue of the International Journal of Periodontics and Restorative Dentistry. The laser’s heat also seals the gums with a “thermal blood clot” which creates a physical barrier, blocking any bacteria or tissue that could recreate a gum pocket.


Ask Dr. Wagenberg: FAQs on Laser Periodontal Treatment


Who is a candidate for this laser treatment?

How is periodontal disease normally treated nationwide?

What about patient discomfort, sensitivity, pain, and downtime?

Does the new laser technique really regenerate soft tissue and bone?

How can this treatment save teeth that could not be saved before?

How does the cost of laser treatment compare to conventional surgery?

What happens to patients who go untreated for moderate to severe periodontal disease because of fear of conventional treatment?

But my doctor said he’d have to pull my teeth because they are so loose and I don’t want to do that?

I have previous x-rays. I don’t want to take them again. Can’t you utilize the ones I have?

How much more is the laser? I’ve been told by my Periodontist that it is expensive.

How will I feel after the laser surgery?

How many appointments will I need?

I only need a cleaning. That is all I have ever needed and had. Can the laser do cleanings?

How do I know this will work? I had surgery 4 years ago, and I now need it again.

 

Who is a candidate for this laser treatment?

Almost everyone who has periodontal disease, swollen gingiva, or soft tissue lesions that require biopsies. The laser treatment is especially good for treating very advanced cases that are almost beyond conventional surgical treatment because the laser treatment can sometimes regenerate bone and soft tissue. It’s estimated that over 100 million American adults have moderate to severe periodontal disease. Of these, only 3-4 percent receive conventional treatment.

How is periodontal disease normally treated nationwide?

The traditional treatment is to do deep scaling and root planing, and to use blades to cut the tissue and burs to grind the bone, and then suture it closed. This procedure works well but often causes considerable discomfort and appearance problems afterward, as well as root sensitivity.

 

What about patient discomfort, sensitivity, pain, and downtime?

Some of the primary patient benefits of laser treatment, as compared to using the blade and sutures, include much less pain, sensitivity, recession, swelling, and very little downtime after treatment. Generally, patients can go back to work the same day, if not sedated.

 

Does the new laser technique really regenerate soft tissue and bone?

Yes, that’s what’s remarkable about this technique. In an eight-year retrospective study, bone density profiles were evaluated and 100 percent of the areas had increases in bone density, and many had increases in bone quantity. In addition, a histologic study has shown new soft tissue attachment in two-thirds of the cases studied and new bone in 100 percent of the cases.

 

How can this treatment save teeth that could not be saved before?

The laser reduces the bacteria and bio-stimulates the cells to produce new attachment and bone.

 

How does the cost of laser treatment compare to conventional surgery?

Even with all the benefits, the cost of laser treatment is no more than conventional surgery. Insurance will often cover part of the cost, depending on the plan. When you consider that patients frequently lose two to three days of work time following conventional treatment, and there is a very minimum loss of work time with laser treatment, the cost of laser treatment is really much less than conventional treatment.

 

What happens to patients who go untreated for moderate to severe periodontal disease because of fear of conventional treatment?

This is a huge concern since only about three percent of the almost 100 million Americans who have moderate to severe periodontal disease are getting treatment. The bottom line is that they will suffer from painful abscesses and multiple extractions. Ultimately, they will lose all their teeth (approximately 40 million Americans are edentulous). They will lose their natural smile and are only able to chew about 20 percent as efficiently as with their natural teeth. The infection may get into the bloodstream, causing an increased risk of heart attack, stroke, diabetes, and other serious systemic diseases. The infectious bacteria that cause periodontal disease are also often transmitted to spouses, significant others, and family members. This can all be avoided by reducing patient fear with laser treatment.

 

But my doctor said he’d have to pull my teeth because they are so loose and I don’t want to do that?

We have been able to save a lot of teeth that other dentists wanted to extract. We have had great success in saving such teeth in comfort and function for a long time. There is nothing better than preserving your own natural teeth. We are happy to schedule consultation to determine if LANAP is right for you.

 

I have previous x-rays. I don’t want to take them again. Can’t you utilize the ones I have?

We can usually use them if they are not poor copies and are less than 6 months old. The conditions of your mouth changes rapidly, and in order to provide an accurate diagnosis, we will need current x-rays.

 

How much more is the laser? I’ve been told by my Periodontist that it is expensive.

The fees for laser treatment are comparable to the fees for conventional periodontal surgery. We do not increase the fees because we are offering new technology. Our fee has sometimes been less than offices using conventional periodontal surgery techniques.

 

How will I feel after the laser surgery?

You may experience some slight ache, throbbing or soreness. Dr. Wagenberg will prescribe antibiotics, mild analgesics, and an antibacterial mouth rinse to take care of any discomfort you may experience. Our patients tell us they are amazed at how little discomfort they had.

 

How many appointments will I need?

Usually two treatment visits and a couple of post-operative visits. Dr. Wagenberg will then prescribe ongoing, supportive treatment with a hygienist every few months, to maintain the results.

 

I only need a cleaning. That is all I have ever needed and had. Can the laser do cleanings?

Yes we do laser periodontal maintenance in the office. We must, however, determine the current level of your periodontal health. Our hygienists have been using the laser for several years now.

 

How do I know this will work? I had surgery 4 years ago, and I now need it again.

Dr. Wagenberg can answer all of your questions regarding treatment. We recommend a personalized consultation, so you can have all of your questions answered. You can meet Doctor Wagenberg and staff and have a demonstration of the laser performed for you.