Laser periodontics has revolutionized the way prosthodontists, periodontists, and dentists perform many procedures. At Kois Dentistry, we leverage laser-assisted treatment for greater precision when performing a wide range of restorative, aesthetic, and implant-related procedures. By using advanced laser technologies, our team can provide minimally invasive laser dentistry in Seattle-South Lake Union, WA without the pain, gum recession, or increased sensitivity associated with most traditional surgical gum procedures. In the hands of our skilled dentists Dr. Dean E. Kois and Dr. Tara L. Kois, laser dentistry results in shorter appointments, more comfortable procedures, and faster healing, while greatly reducing your risk of gum disease progression and infection.
Gum tissue is the unsung hero of your mouth, supporting your teeth and jawbone while creating a barrier against bacteria. Billions of bacteria live in your mouth and many enter your bloodstream via your gums. Countless studies have found a strong link between poor oral health and systemic diseases including heart disease, diabetes, stroke, dementia, rheumatoid arthritis, some types of male cancer, and even pregnancy complications. By the time many patients visit us for gum disease treatment in Seattle-South Lake Union, WA they’ve been living with gingivitis or more advanced stages of gum disease for too long. Maintaining good oral health reduces your risk of periodontal disease and its associated health consequences. Laser dentistry plays a key role in this equation because it makes treating gum disease easier and far more pleasant, even if you suffer from dental anxiety.
During your dental exam, we’ll check for signs of gum disease, but it’s important for you to be aware of the following signs and seek prompt treatment:
While the main cause of gum disease is plaque, many other factors can impact your gum health. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates more than 70% of Americans 65 and older have periodontitis. In addition to age, other risk factors include:
Dental lasers enhance healing and bone regeneration for many surgical procedures. The award-winning BIOLASE laser system enhances our ability to treat gum recession, periodontal disease, failing dental implants, and more. Laser is highly effective because it removes all the water content from near your teeth, thereby eliminating harmful bacterial colonies. After your teeth are cleaned and disinfected, we use the laser to remove thin layers of tissue in periodontal pockets. This allows remaining gum tissue to heal against the clean surface of your teeth.
Scaling and root planing is a deep cleaning and the most common nonsurgical treatment for periodontal pockets greater than 3 mm. Scaling is used to remove plaque and tartar beneath your gums. Water provides continuous tissue cleansing, making it easier to eliminate dental plaque. During root planning, we use the laser to smooth tooth root surfaces to eliminate harmful bacteria.
Bacteria can recolonize under your gums as early as one to two months after a deep cleaning. During a periodontal maintenance visit, we measure your pocket depths and re-evaluate your gum health. Then plaque and tartar is removed slightly below your gums. While this procedure is usually recommended every 3-4 months, a number of factors determine its frequency, including your oral hygiene routine at home.
This surgical procedure is performed for both aesthetic and functional purposes. During this procedure, we reshape your gums at the base of a desired tooth in order to expose additional tooth surface. In some cases, minimal amounts of bone may be removed. This is an effective method for improving a gummy smile that impacts your front teeth. It’s also done for functional reasons when there is inadequate tooth structure above your gums to support a crown or other restoration.
During this procedure, we use the laser to carefully sculpt and remove small amounts of gum tissue. This is a common surgical approach performed for aesthetic and medical reasons. As a cosmetic procedure, excess gum tissue is removed to remedy gummy smiles. This can also be done to improve an uneven gumline that resulted from a restoration. If you’re suffering from more advanced gum disease, we remove infected gum tissues to prevent it from spreading and enable healing.
Gum grafting may be recommended if you have gum disease or to optimize smile aesthetics after dental implant placement. Laser-assisted gum grafting results in less impact to treated areas and minimizes postoperative discomfort with minimal to no blood loss.
This form of gum disease causes infection around a dental implant instead of a natural tooth. Risk factors include smoking tobacco, poor oral hygiene, diabetes, a compromised immune system, bite misalignment, tooth clenching/grinding, or an allergic reaction to the implant itself. If left untreated, progressive bone loss and infection can cause the implant to fail. Early detection is key to a successful outcome and treatment depends on the stage of the infection. It typically involves infection control with antibiotics, using a laser for implant surface decontamination, techniques to regenerate lost tissue, and plaque control.
Studies indicate lasers used to treat moderate to severe periodontal disease improve and help sustain periodontal health. The benefits of laser include:
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