Treatment of Aphthous Ulcers
Lasers have revolutionized the way dentist perform some procedures. Aphthous ulcers, more commonly known as canker sores, affect 10% of the population. Topical steroid agents or chemical cauterizing agents have been used to treat these lesions, but studies show that patients’ benefit more from having laser therapy treatments. One study showed that 75% of the patients reported a reduction in the pain in the same session after laser treatment and total healing after 4 days. It usually takes 5-7 days for it to heal with steroid treatment.
Treatment of Cold Sores
Herpetic Simplex Lesions (cold sores): are caused by the HSV-1 strain. They usually breakout in the non-movable parts of the mouth including gums, lips, and hard palate. These lesions usually crust over and heal within 10-14 days. They are very contagious and care should be taken to ensure you do not spread it. Dentists usually use Acyclovir in ointments to speed up healing and in pill form to help prevent recurrence. Studies have found that 100% of the lesions in the prodromal (first sign of lesion, tingling, itching, inflammation) stage, 95% in the vesicular stage (small blisters), and 91% of the crust stage were able to cure during the first 48 hours with laser treatment.
Gingival Sculpting (gum contouring)
The process of contouring or reshaping your gums/tissues can benefit a patient for cosmetic or health reasons. Cosmetically, the procedure involves removing and re-sculpting uneven or excessive gingival tissue. The health benefit of eliminating harmful bacteria by reducing gum pockets is greater. The procedure typically requires about an hour with minor discomfort afterwards.