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Island Tower Dentistry

LANAP® Laser Surgery

Is Laser Periodontal Therapy (LANAP®) Worth It?

Many Southwest Florida-area dental patients struggling with periodontal disease have heard that laser gum treatment can effectively treat the condition and prevent further damage to gum tissue and teeth. However, with concerns that this high-tech treatment may be cost-prohibitive, some patients are leery of asking their dentists whether laser gum therapy is a viable solution for their periodontal disease. Among the follow-up questions posed by those patients who do ask their dentists about the LANAP® protocol laser gum surgery is whether the treatment is “worth it?”

Marco Island dentists Dr. Ryan Whelen and Dr. Van Dyke will respond with a resounding “absolutely” when their patients ask this question. Both doctors call it a game changer in treating periodontal disease at his Island Tower Dentistry practice and note that many patients secure better outcomes from LANAP® protocol laser gum surgery than they would have with traditional surgical treatments. Let’s further explore why laser periodontal therapy with LANAP® is worth it.

LANAP® Laser Treatment Less Invasive Than Surgery

Let’s face it, patients who undergo traditional periodontal treatments like scaling and root planing, gingival flap surgery, and gum and/or bone grafting face significant discomfort and pain despite any anesthetics or sedation. Depending on the treatment, patients might need sutures, downtime, and a soft-food diet for up to two weeks.

Patients who undergo the LANAP® experience significantly less pain, swelling, discomfort, and bleeding gums during and after the procedure, though most patients do experience some mild, temporary soreness. With no incisions, there’s no need for stitches, and the lack of surgical trauma negates the need for downtime. Because the laser energy kills bacteria, the procedure also carries less risk of infection than traditional periodontal treatments.

LANAP® Treatment as Effective, If Not More, as Traditional Procedures

The FDA has approved the LANAP® protocol laser gum surgery as an adjunct treatment used with other procedures and as a stand-alone treatment for periodontal disease. Clinical studies have proven that the laser energy kills bacteria responsible for periodontal disease and stimulates the regeneration of gum, bone, and ligament tissues damaged by gum disease. A recent follow-up study on patients who’ve undergone the procedure found minimal gum recession, improved tooth stability, “substantial improvement in furcation” (decrease in pockets between bone and gum), and lower incidents of gum bleeding. This study concluded that “LANAP® appears to have several benefits compared to conventional periodontal surgery, including being less invasive and less traumatic; resulting in less swelling; having minimal postoperative discomfort, [gingival recession], and thermal sensitivity; leading to more rapid healing; and having equal or better overall results [as traditional periodontal therapy).”

Your LANAP® Laser Periodontal Procedure at Island Tower Dentistry

Dr. Whelen delivers LANAP’s® adjustable laser energy into affected periodontal pockets between the tooth and the gum with a fiber optic tip. The energy destroys infected tissues without damaging healthy tissues and kills any surrounding bacteria. It also helps remove plaque on the tooth root surfaces, but Dr. Whelen may need to remove some with a specialized scaling tool. The laser ablation of tissues optimizes the surfaces for healing, and Dr. Whelen will use the laser energy to create a fibrin clot to seal any pockets between the gum and teeth. Along with keeping food and bacteria out of the pocket, the clot will help stimulate new tissue growth.

Island Tower Dentistry performs the laser surgery over the course of two appointments if both sides of the mouth are affected by periodontal disease. This allows for normal post-procedure bite function on the untreated side of the mouth and promotes optimal healing of the treated side. Each session can take up to two hours depending on the patient’s gum disease progression.

Learn More About LANAP® Laser Surgery at Island Tower Dentistry

LANAP® protocol laser gum surgery at Island Tower Surgery is a safe, highly effective treatment for periodontal disease, with a treatment cost similar to traditional gum surgeries. Both Dr. Van Dyke and Dr. Whelen are licensed LANAP® providers who have undergone extensive training in performing the procedure with the Millennium Dental Technologies, Inc.

To learn more about Island Tower Dentistry’s LANAP® protocol laser gum treatment or other periodontal treatment options in Marco Island, Florida, schedule an appointment today. To be even more proactive in your oral health care, we also offer gum disease DNA testing to determine a patient’s susceptibility to the disease. For outstanding dental health care in Southwest Florida, contact Island Tower Dentistry today at 239-394-1004.

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