Gum Disease-LANAP Laser Surgery

Fredericksburg Dentist accepting most of the PPO plans like.. 
  • Anthem BCBS

  • Aetna

  • Care First

  • Cigna

  • Delta Dental

  • Guardian

  • GEHA

  • Humana

  • Lincoln

  • Metlife

  • MedicAid

  • Smile for Children

  • United Healthcare

  • United Concordia

Gum disease, or Periodontal disease affects over 80% of all adults!

The disease starts mostly when a layer called Plaque, accumulates on the teeth. When plaque is not promptly removed, calcium from saliva hardens on to the plaque to form - Tartar or Calculus. These are barnacles-like projections that form on the surfaces of teeth and roots and act as Coral Reefs, only in this case, a safe harbor for certain types of germs. Your body naturally tries to fight off these invaders with an inflammatory attack, sending white blood cells to the area to destroy the bacteria.  It is this inflammation that causes the gum tissue to bleed easily when you brush or floss. There is some evidence that this inflammation adds to the inflammatory burden in your body resulting in a possible increase in other systemic diseases such as Strokes, Heart Disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis etc.  Once the body starts to fight off this infection, there is an unfortunate “friendly fire” type damage that occurs to the supporting structure of your teeth, the periodontium. This friendly fire then causes damage to the supporting structures leading to symptoms such as:
 

  • Gums that are red, swollen and bleed easily.

  • Gums that seem to have pulled away from the teeth.

  • Bad breath or halitosis.

  • Pus between your teeth and gums

  • Teeth that seem to be loose or moving away from one another.

  • Change in the way your teeth fit together.

 

Usually the disease progresses slowly and symptoms show up gradually over time. For the most part, it is silent. This causes most people to not worry about their problems, because its human nature to not worry about things until it starts to hurt.

So everything seems fine until the day you have, what we call a “Gum Attack” , you know like a “Heart Attack”.                                                  

  

As with most things, it is easiest to manage a problem in the earlier stages. Gum disease is graded like Cancer.  We think of Stage 1 or 2 being the mild or less severe form of Gum disease, where, only relatively few teeth are affected,  whereas in Stage 3 and 4, almost all teeth are affected with varying levels of severity. Of the three options that are available to treat Stage 3 and 4 type of Gum disease,  the LANAP protocol is the most conservative and effective alternative to Osseous Gum Surgery.

 

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The LANAP protocol is a laser-based treatment for gum disease. There is no cutting and suturing with the LANAP protocol. Patients typically report less pain and discomfort during and after the procedure, compared to traditional periodontal surgery.  This patient friendly procedure helps you get healthy again comfortably, without fear.  Generally, the LANAP protocol is less invasive than traditional surgery and helps maintain a beautiful smile line The LANAP protocol is a patented periodontal treatment, cleared by the FDA in 2004.  The procedure can only be done with the PerioLase® MVP-7; this laser operates at a specific wavelength that attacks the bacteria that contributes to gum disease while leaving healthy tissue intact. Post-surgical recession and tooth sensitivity, which can be significant following traditional gum surgery, are also greatly reduced.

The LANAP® protocol uses the specific wavelength PerioLase® MVP-7™ dental laser to vaporize bacteria deep within the pockets of the gums while leaving healthy tissue intact. Patients undergoing this type of treatment enjoy fast healing times and more predictable results. Because of the gentle nature of the procedure, patients typically see immediate results with less bleeding when brushing and less bad breath.  Of course, your gums need time to recover and heal, but after LANAP® treatment, you can drive your car, go back to work, or do anything else you like. 

 

Patient Benefits:

  • Faster Healing – LANAP® treatment is minimally invasive and allows the body to recover and heal more quickly.

  • Less Discomfort – Patients report less discomfort during and after surgery.

  • No Cut, No Sew, No Fear – the LANAP protocol uses laser light energy to eliminate the bacteria that cause gum disease, and help your mouth recover faster

  • Minimal Recovery Time – Most patients can immediately return to their daily routine.

  • Little to No Gum Recession – Because the procedure doesn’t require cutting the gums, there is less risk of recession and your beautiful smile is maintained.

  • Reduction in Gum Inflammation and Bleeding – The PerioLase® MVP-7™ targets inflammatory bacteria without injuring healthy tissue.

  • Saves Teeth – Patients can keep their natural teeth sometimes even when the teeth have been deemed ‘hopeless’ with traditional treatments. Keeping your natural teeth has been linked to a longer lifespan!

  • Safe for patients with Health Concerns –LANAP® protocol is safe for patients with health concerns such as diabetes, HIV, hemophilia, or those taking medications such as Plavix or aspirin. 

 

What to Expect: Your LANAP Surgery

LANAP periodontal surgery is a full-mouth procedure usually completed in two 2-hour visits. We complete one side of the mouth during the first visit, and complete the other side on the second visit. Surgeries are usually scheduled within one week of one another. It is common to quickly return to work or other activities.

What to Expect: The First Few Days

You may experience mild aching, throbbing, and soreness of the treated areas for the first couple days—this can be helped with mild pain medications. The tissue around the teeth may appear discolored. Your bite may feel slightly different, but the teeth will adapt. You cannot brush or floss for the first 7-10 days after treatment, and you will need to follow a liquid or mushy diet. Smoking decreases results for all gum treatments, including LANAP.

What to Expect: Follow-up Care

As the gums heal, the teeth will shift, and your bite will need to be adjusted several times over the coming months. Splints may be fabricated to stabilize and immobilize the teeth. It is important that you wear these splints as instructed to promote healing. Expect to have your teeth professionally cleaned every three months for at least the first year, and then as recommended by your dentist.

Who is a candidate for LANAP laser surgery?

Patients with moderate-to-severe gum disease can especially benefit from the LANAP protocol. The LANAP protocol is also an excellent treatment option for patients who are fearful of conventional scalpel surgery and patients taking certain medications, such as blood thinners. With the LANAP protocol, patients do not have to stop taking any medications.

 

Why is it important to get my gum disease treated? 

The health risks of gum disease go far beyond the loss of teeth. There is a connection between gum disease and a number of serious medical conditions. People with periodontal disease are almost twice as likely to suffer from coronary artery disease, and have nearly twice the risk of having a fatal heart attack. Gum disease has also been linked to other health problems, including respiratory disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, certain cancers, heart disease, stroke, osteoporosis, erectile dysfunction, HPV, and pregnancy complications.

Can the LANAP protocol help my loose dental implants?

Yes! Using the PerioLase MVP-7, we can often save ailing or failing implants in a similar manner using the LAPIP™ protocol. We use the same laser, but different laser settings and light exposure that will help your implant stabilize while destroying periodontal pathogens and endotoxins.