The advent of LASER in modern dentistry

The term LASER is an acronym for ‘Light Amplification by the Stimulated Emission of Radiation’. This technology came into being as early as the 1960s and was introduced to the dental industry too. Theodre Maiman was the introducer of this technology. He mixed neon with helium in order to give birth to the technology.

So, how does the laser technology work for your dentist?

The thin and concentrated beam of light emitted by the Laser instrument is the primary tool in the hands of your dentist. Since light emitted is calculated in wavelengths, dentists are able to determine the exact amount of laser to be applied. One wavelength generates a certain amount of thermal output. According to the particular tissue on which the beam is to be applied, the extent of laser is to be determined. Some wavelengths are more conducive to performing certain procedures than others. For instance, there are particular lasers for soft tissue surgeries while others are effective on hard tissues like your tooth enamel or your jaw bone.


The use of LASER technology in the dental industry is a subject of continuous research and advancement. In the dental world, uses of LASER are many. They can be categorized based upon:


  • the lasing medium used, such as, gas laser and solid laser
  • the  tissue applicability, hard tissue and soft tissue lasers


Let us take a glimpse into the different types of laser applications in the dental industry:


  1. Carbon-di-oxide Laser

    Since CO2 laser has a very high affinity for water, it causes rapid soft tissue removal and hemostasis. The depth of penetration is also very less. Disadvantages of the CO2 laser include


    Its relative large size and

    High cost that might be unaffordable to many and

    Hard tissue destructive interactions.


  2. Neodymium Yttrium Aluminum Garnet Lasers

    This wavelength is highly absorbed by pigmented tissue. Therefore, quite obviously it is effective for cutting and coagulating dental soft tissues, with good hemostasis. In addition to its surgical applications, research in the concerned field has confirmed that this laser is as well useful for nonsurgical purposes concerning periodontal disease control.

  3. Erbium Laser

    The erbium wavelengths are known to have a high affinity for hydroxyapatite. Also it has the highest absorption of water compared to any dental laser wavelengths. This makes it the best LASER choice for treatment of dental hard tissues. Since dental soft tissues also have a high percentage of water, the erbium lasers could also be used for soft tissue ablation as well.

  4. Diode Laser

    The diode laser is basically semiconducting medium made of aluminum, gallium, arsenide, and occasionally indium. They are capable of producing wavelengths, ranging from approximately 810 nm to 980 nm. These diode wavelengths are absorbed by tissue pigment (melanin) and hemoglobin. On the contrary, they are poorly absorbed by the hydroxyapatite and water present in the enamel. Accordingly, certain procedures like aesthetic gingival re-contouring, soft tissue crown lengthening, etc. are performed with the aid of diode lasers

A list of common uses of Dental Lasers

Simply put, when dental lasers are being discussed, a number of its uses in this particular medical field can be listed down. Since the light emitted serves both the purposes of removing or shaping tissue, a number functions are actually performed.

  • Removing as well as reshaping bone and gum tissues during the crown lengthening procedures
  • Removing muscle attachments which are responsible for restricting tongue or lip movements
  • Speeding up the in-office tooth whitening procedures
  • Reducing the discomfort caused by cold sores and cankers
  • Removing small layers  of tooth enamel while say, applying veneers
  • Preparing your tooth enamel for composite bonding
  • Repairing certain worn-down fillings from  your cavities

According to a study published in the National Journal of Maxillofacial Surgery, titled Laser in dentistry: An innovative tool in modern dental practice...

In the last two decades, there has been an explosion of research studies in laser application. In hard tissue application, the laser is used for caries prevention, bleaching, restorative removal and curing, cavity preparation, dentinal hypersensitivity, growth modulation and for diagnostic purposes, whereas soft tissue application includes wound healing, removal of hyperplastic tissue to uncovering of impacted or partially erupted tooth, photodynamic therapy for malignancies, photostimulation of herpetic lesion. Use of the laser proved to be an effective tool to increase efficiency, specificity, ease, and cost and comfort of the dental treatment.

Cited: Verma SK, Maheshwari S, Singh RK, Chaudhari PK. Laser in dentistry: An innovative tool in modern dental practice. Natl J Maxillofac Surg. 2012;3(2):124–132. doi:10.4103/0975-5950.111342


Efficacy and safety of Laser use in dentistry

One safety concern related to the use of lasers is, protecting your eyes from the laser beam. Usually dentists always give you a pair of special glasses to wear during the procedure. In case, it is missed do not forget to ask for one.


Now, the use of Lasers in the dental field has been approved by the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA). However, the ADA’s (American Dental Association) Seal of Acceptance is yet to come. Unless that arrives, it does not ensure dentists that the required standards of efficacy and safety are met. Therefore, despite being in the industry for decades now, the Laser Technology is still not much talked about in the dental world. However, dentists have been successfully using this advanced mechanism to deliver patients with pain-free, hassle-free treatments as far as feasible.

What Are the Benefits of Laser Assisted Periodontal Treatment?

Although it is a new type of technology, many patients who try laser periodontal therapy are pleased with the results. Similar to other industries, lasers have revolutionized oral care and given doctors a new tool to treat gum disease. In this blog, we tell you about the benefits of laser assisted periodontal treatment.

What Is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease develops when the supporting tissues and bone that keep your teeth in place become infected. According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NICDR), adults in their 30s and 40s tend to suffer from periodontal disease.

Causes of periodontal disease include:

  • Smoking
  • Certain Prescription Medications
  • Genetics
  • Serious Health Conditions

How Does Laser Therapy Work?

A dentist will use a laser to eliminate the inflamed gum tissue around the root of your teeth. After the infected tissue has been removed with the laser, the root will be exposed. The dentist will then scrape off the calculus and plaque below your gums and around the exposed root. Finally, any rough spots that might attract bacteria and create future infections are smoothed out with dental instruments. The gum and the root will regenerate as you heal from the procedure.

The Academy of General Dentistry (AGD) cites the following as some of the benefits of using laser assisted periodontal treatment:

  • Lasers are capable of precisely targeting the infection
  • Patients experience less bleeding, pain, and swelling
  • General anesthetic is not needed for the procedure
  • Time for recovery and healing is shorter than other types of treatments

Laser Therapy The DoK - Dentist of Keller

Are you interested in learning more about the laser assisted periodontal treatment services we offer? If so, get in touch with our doctor today to get the answers you are looking for. At The DoK - Dentist of Keller, our dental professionals use the latest technology to treat gum disease and help our patients maintain a healthy smile. Visit our state-of-the-art, boutique-style office to speak to a dentist today.

Call to request a laser assisted periodontal treatment appointment with our dentist in Keller.