Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Lasers On Cusp Of High Technology In Dental Operatory

Date:
October 20, 1998
Source:
American Dental Association
Summary:
If one new development exemplifies dentistry in the 21st century to patients, it may well be the laser. The stuff of science fiction for most of the last century, the laser is now an option for some dental procedures. Right now, patients are no doubt most excited by the fact that cavity preparation with lasers may not require local anesthesia.

SAN FRANCISCO -- If one new development exemplifies dentistry in the 21st century to patients, it may well be the laser. The stuff of science fiction for most of the last century, the laser is now an option for some dental procedures. Right now, patients are no doubt most excited by the fact that cavity preparation with lasers may not require local anesthesia.

Lasers are not any faster than a dental handpiece when it comes to cavity preparation, but procedural time might be faster overall because the dentist does not have to wait for an injected anesthetic to take effect, says G. Lynn Powell, D.D.S, a member of the American Dental Association's (ADA) Council on Scientific Affairs and assistant dean for dental education at the University of Utah School of Medicine.

A panel of dentists, who have used lasers extensively, including Dr. Powell, will describe the various new uses and discuss the future of lasers in dental treatment in a presentation at the ADA's 139th Annual Session in San Francisco, October 26.

While he sees a bright future for laser light in the dental practice, Dr. Powell also cautions that the dental handpiece is not going the way of the horse and buggy just yet. "If a dentist does not have a laser, that has no bearing on the quality of his or her work," Dr. Powell says. "The laser is an adjunct that has some usefulness and advantages," he adds. "But, lasers can't do certain things such as remove amalgam fillings or make crown preparations. Will they replace the handpiece? Maybe someday."

The Food and Drug Administration has approved the use of dental lasers for soft tissue (gum) surgery, the curing of composite and other light activated esthetic restorations, the bleaching or whitening of teeth, treatment of apthous ulcers (canker sores), sulcular debridement (cleaning out of periodontal pockets) and, most recently, cavity preparation.

In a position statement, The ADA Council on Scientific Affairs reviewed the use of the erbium:yttrium-aluminum-garnet (Er:YAG) laser for the preparation of cavities in accessible, small-to-moderate-sized lesions. The Council adds it is cautiously optimistic that the Er:YAG laser system "may prove useful" for other restorative procedures in the near future. The Council also believes laser technology to be "a promising and rapidly changing field of dentistry" and has invited manufacturers to submit their laser systems for evaluation under the ADA's Seal of Acceptance program, which assures dentists and the public that product labeling is clear and advertising claims are true in fact and implication.

Lasers are now being studied in clinical trials for other applications such as decay prevention and root canal treatment. Previous studies found the carbon dioxide (CO2) laser reduces tooth enamel demineralization. By heating the tooth enamel without damaging the tooth pulp, the laser makes teeth more resistant to the acids that can lead to decay, but without any visible change to the tooth surface.

In endodontics, for which lasers are closest to another FDA clearance, Er:Yag, diode and argon wavelengths have been used in other countries to clean out root canals without removing hard tissue. They also have been used as an adjunct to the by-hand preparation of root canals to remove any remaining organic material left behind before the canal and tooth are sealed.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Dental Association. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Dental Association. "Lasers On Cusp Of High Technology In Dental Operatory." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 October 1998. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/10/981020073213.htm>.
American Dental Association. (1998, October 20). Lasers On Cusp Of High Technology In Dental Operatory. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/10/981020073213.htm
American Dental Association. "Lasers On Cusp Of High Technology In Dental Operatory." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/10/981020073213.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

AP (July 22, 2014) Two federal appeals courts issued conflicting rulings Tuesday on the legality of the federally-run healthcare exchange that operates in 36 states. (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The new sci-fi thriller "Lucy" is making people question whether we really use all our brainpower. But, as scientists have insisted for years, we do. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Newsy (July 22, 2014) Boston scientists have discovered a new way to create fully functioning human platelets using a bioreactor and human stem cells. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins