Is the Dental Laser Safe?
In the decades since dental lasers became commercial available for clinical dental practices, countless patients have enjoyed more comfortable treatment options for a number of dental procedures. That’s because dental lasers can make their experience efficient, comfortable, and cost effective. As dental practices continue to incorporate lasers as a means of offering their patients this level of elevated care, one of the most important considerations is safety. With a qualified dental professional who has the necessary training, the dental laser is a safe option for a number of scenarios, including pediatric patients.
A Few Facts
Anyone inquiring about the safety of laser dentistry should understand that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved all lasers sold in the U.S. These approvals are based on data that supports a respective laser’s efficacy and safety.
Dentists and hygienists are also required to complete training on the use of different laser devices. Dedicated Dental Hygiene is a professional organization offering this training, and laser manufacturers and some dental schools can also be a resource.
Ensuring patient safety and comfort should be a tenet of every dental practice, and steps like rinsing the mouth to maintain temperature and supplying safety glasses to eliminate eye exposure during laser treatments are standard.
How Does it Work?
LASER stands for “light amplification by the stimulated emission of radiation.” As a dental tool, the laser uses light energy in a narrow, focused beam. When the light energy is directed at tissue, it produces a reaction. Laser treatments can be appropriate for detecting cavities, prepping and filling, treating tooth sensitivity, lengthening crowns, a number of cosmetic and surgical applications, and other procedures. Different treatments may require either a hard tissue or soft tissue laser, but the benefits are the same. Typically, laser dentistry offers these advantages:
• Minimized bleeding
• Reduced need for anesthetic
• Faster healing times
• Reduced likelihood of infection
• Reduced damage to surrounding tissues
The dental laser also gives dentists and hygienists a higher level of precision, which contributes to a more comfortable, less intimidating experience.
Risks of laser dentistry are relatively minimal, with one caveat. It’s critical that any dental practice offering laser dentistry have the right training and qualifications. Inexperienced practitioners using the wrong power level or wavelength could create tissue damage on a patient. At Dedicated Dental Hygiene, we offer laser dentistry courses around the country, including in-office trainings, to ensure your dental practice is qualified and comfortable with the laser. Contact us today to learn more about these courses. Then you can assure patients with confidence that laser dentistry in your office is completely safe.