Welcome back to my article series about the Sleep Dentistry Defined approach to gum disease treatment and restoration. In case you missed it, last time I discussed a few ways we can treat gum disease. Today, I’m wrapping up the series with an in-depth look at one of the best tools we have at Sleep Dentistry Defined to fight gum disease!
Severity of Gum Disease
As we discussed last month, there are varying degrees of gum disease – aka Periodontitis. Some of them are easy to treat – a deep cleaning at our office, followed by excellent oral hygiene at home can often reverse mild gum disease. On the other end of the spectrum, advanced gum disease may have already caused so much damage to teeth and gums that individual or multiple teeth need to be removed and replaced with dental implants. Extreme gum recession can be restored surgically with donor tissue.
The LANAP Protocol and PerioLase MVP-7
In between these two extremes, teeth and gums affected by gum disease can be restored without the need to replace teeth, and over time, gum and bone tissue can be grown back naturally instead of needing to graft in new tissue. The great news is, LANAP Protocol laser therapy is perfect for treating moderate gum disease. And it is much less invasive (read: uncomfortable) than other methods out there.
The PerioLase MVP-7
At Sleep Dentistry Defined, we are totally committed to patient health and comfort. We know that the more at ease you are in our office, the better we can help you with your dental health! And the healthier you are, the happier you’ll be!
We’ve recently invested in a PerioLase MVP-7 because it is simply the best way to remove diseased gum tissue when treating gum disease. That’s because it is a precision device that removes only diseased gum tissue, without harming surrounding, healthy tissue. The treatment itself promotes your own growth factors!
Less tissue removed is great for two reasons. First and foremost, that means less discomfort for our patients! Less nerves are touched, which means pain or discomfort can be handled during and after surgery with over-the-counter Aspirin. And second, less tissue removed means less new tissue that needs to grow back, so recovery can take much less time than other, less precise methods of gum and disease removal.
Part of the reason that this tool is so precise is the laser fiber tip of the MVP-7 is incredibly small – it’s about as wide as just three hairs on the top of your head! (Or three thousandths of an inch, to be even more precise.)
Of course, a tool is only as good as the person using it. That’s why I’ve spent many hours undergoing specialized training to use this tool, and we have developed treatment plans for a range of patients that need to treat gum disease. Laser periodontal therapy can be used on its own, or in conjunction with other surgical or non-surgical methods to achieve the best results possible for each patient.
While my training has been very in-depth and technical, I’d love to share just a few high points with you now. And next time you see me, feel free to ask about anything else you’re curious about. But watch out, I might go on, and on, and on about it!
Nd:YAG Variable-pulse Laser
This looks like a random jumble of letters, doesn’t it? But what it means is that the tool we use for laser periodontal therapy is extremely versatile. I can use it to remove diseased tissue and bacteria. Then, using a different setting, I can use the same tool to generate stable fibrin clotting, which seals off the remaining, healthy gum tissue. The laser beam can also be set to pass through some tissues, but not others so that we can even target diseased areas that are underneath healthy tissue!
No More Stitches
In the past, scalpels were used to remove diseased gum tissue. Which means stitches were required to suture the remaining tissue together in order to heal. As you can imagine, this is not fun for my patients. Compare that to what we can accomplish with the PerioLase MVP-7: just a few hours of precise, focused laser treatment to remove the diseased tissue, which then heals on its own and allows your body to naturally grow new, healthy tissue in its place. Isn’t that incredible?!
I’m so happy I can offer this revolutionary gum disease treatment to my patients. I really hope that it allows patients who have been fighting gum disease for years to consider getting it treated. Many patients are hesitant to go to the dentist for a variety of reasons – and that’s understandable! At Sleep Dentistry Defined we’ve gone to great lengths to make our office inviting and comforting for our patients so that they can overcome these fears and begin healing. And, as you can see, this commitment to patient comfort includes the tools we invest in and treatments we offer.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this in-depth look at gum disease, our approach to treatment, and the incredible new tool we have to fight against gum disease! Did you like this article series? If so, send us a note! We love hearing from patients and want to share as much as we can about what we do so that you’re empowered to get incredible dental care.
Dr Heath Lampee, DMD