For more than 50 years, dental staff have relied primarily on the same visual and mechanical assessment methods to diagnose and classify periodontal disease. Clinical signs are simply a measurement of the past damage of a disease process. While clinical presentation and probing depths are indicators that disease exists, these alone cannot determine the types and quantities of the responsible bacteria. Likewise, clinical signs alone cannot determine if therapy has achieved the goal of suppression of that bacteria after treatment is rendered. We are now able to offer a pre and post diagnostic screening test that will provide the dental professional with a personalized bacterial profile of the infection. Using this profile we can appropriately modify therapy based on the information given and provide a highly personalized periodontal treatment plan to achieve optimal health.
DNA testing is also available to determine a patients predisposition to periodontal disease before symptoms appear, or when the disease is already present. DNA-PCR testing of saliva can help the clinician with an earlier and more specific diagnosis of disease based on causation. Treatment planning is also enhanced, as therapy can be appropriately modified based on both tests.
The Waterlase laser is a dental laser that combines water, air and laser energy for safe use on human tissue. Our dental tissues and the bacteria in our mouth are partially made of water and when the laser makes contact it excites the water molecules which kills the bacteria. This also removes any infected tissue around our teeth. For this reason the Waterlase is a great laser to use in the treatment of periodontal disease. Further, due to this lasers biostimulating effects, the use of it around periodontally involved teeth can help ignite bone re-growth in the diseased area and can help stabilize otherwise hopeless teeth. Approved by the U. S. Food and Drug administration in 1998, the Waterlase is cleared for numerous procedures and can be safely used on all ages and is 100% safe for the elderly, pregnant women and even infants.
Lasers are reshaping dentistry. They can be used in every specialty of dentistry and for a wide range of procedures. Treatment of periodontal disease is one of those procedures that has changed over the years and is now moving into the age of lasers. The most common used laser for this procedure is the diode laser. Periodontal disease is a chronic inflammatory disease caused by a bacterial infection. The bactericidal and detoxifying effect of laser treatment is advantageous in disease therapy. The diode laser specifically targets unhealthy gingival tissues and the energy can penetrate deep into the infected area delivering its therapeutic effects. Moreover, there is a significant suppression of invasive bacteria that is associated with the disease. The diode laser provides a non-antibiotic solution by its penetrating energy into the affected tissue around the root of the tooth. Studies have shown significant improved gingival health with the addition of the diode laser with tradition deep cleaning treatments. Improvements in gingival bleeding, decreased inflammation and pocket depth, as well as decreased tooth mobility and decreased clinical attachment loss. This improvement in gingival health remains more stable than with congenital treatment alone and has been found to have long term lasting effects. Laser safety studies have shown no adverse events of the treated areas. The diode lasers bactericidal action on periodontal pathogens makes it the best, most effective adjunctive service to use when it comes to the treatment of periodontal disease.
Ultrasonic scalers are utilized to eliminate tartar and bacterial plaque deposits. Ultrasonic scalers operate on frequencies that break off tartar and disrupt plaque above and below the gums. They are more effective in removing deposits than the traditional hand tools. The ultrasonic vibrations also break up plaque biofilm, which are communities of bacteria that co-exist under a force field environment and survival has galvanized them to resist even the most effective antimicrobial treatments and home care routines. Biofilms are how disease-causing bacteria progress into destructive gingivitis and periodontal disease. The use of ultrasonic scalers have proven to reduce the number of colonizing bacteria when used in both traditional and deep cleaning treatments. It helps to create an environment that encourages healthy tissue by reducing irritants that cause inflammation, bleeding and bone destruction. We use ultrasonic scalers at every appointment to reduce the amount of bacteria plaque, stain, tartar, and biofilm to give our patients the best care possible.