Many Lafayette residents are afraid to go to the dentist. For some individuals with dental anxiety, it’s because they had a painful experience at the dentist when they were young. Others fear needles or a perceived lack of control. Another oft-cited reason men and women are scared of the dentist is the dreaded dental drill.
If you need dental treatment and are putting it off, we have fantastic news. It may not require a dental drill!
Drill-less dentistry is typically called air abrasion or microabrasion. Air abrasion can be used for all types of dental services such as removing tooth decay or preparing tooth surfaces for sealants, bonding or a crown. An air abrasion instrument works like a little sandblaster. It streams a fine stream of particles at the area that would generally be drilled. After the stream of particles strikes and removes the cavities, the materials are suctioned out of the mouth.
What Are the Advantages of Air Abrasion?
Compared with the standard drilling method, the advantages of air abrasion include:
- Air abrasion generates no heat, pressure, or vibration.
- Air abrasion may reduce the need for anesthesia, particularly if the cavity is shallow.
- Air abrasion leaves more of the healthy tooth tissue behind.
- Air abrasion reduces the risk of fracturing and chipping of the tooth, which some dentists believe can influence the life span of the filling. (WebMD)
Another technology that helps make a dental procedure faster and less painful is laser dentistry. Pinpoint-precise Diode lasers are typically easier on the patient and require shorter healing times.
Here are some of the ways dentists use lasers:
- Tooth decay. Lasers are used to remove decay within a tooth and prepare the surrounding enamel for the filling.
- Gum disease. Lasers are used to reshape gums and remove bacteria during root canal procedures.
- Biopsy. Lasers can remove a small piece of tissue (called a biopsy) so that it can be examined for cancer.
- Lesion Removal. Lasers are also used to remove lesions in the mouth and relieve the pain of canker sores.
- Teeth Whitening. Lasers are used to speed up in-office teeth whitening services. A peroxide bleaching solution, applied to the tooth surface, is ”activated” by laser energy, which speeds up the whitening process. (American Dental Association)
Still not convinced? If advanced technology and equipment don’t ease your mind, consider sleeping through your treatment. At Boulder County Smiles we offer several levels of sedation for even the most terrified patients.
Dental problems don’t go away. They get worse. (And that’s the scariest thing of all.)
A compassionate, understanding dental team is just as vital as the latest dental technology. At Boulder County Smiles, we understand how debilitating dental anxiety can be. Let us help you through your treatment and get you on the path toward optimum oral health.
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