- Laser root canal treatment overview
- What is LASER?
- Types of Laser in Dentistry
- Role of Laser in root canal treatment
- So, Why root canal treatment? Why is RCT needed?
- Let’s see, how lasers can be used in root canal treatment?
- Advantages of using laser in root canal treatment
- Disadvantages of using laser in root canal treatment
Laser root canal treatment overview
This is the era of 21st century. Science and technologies are now far better. Now Laser is the main part of most of the medical treatments available. In the past five decades, Laser has now become a trend in dentistry, too. So let’s get some knowledge of laser root canal treatment.
What is LASER?
Full form of LASER is “Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation”. As said in the name, Laser is the end result of stimulated emission. Here, there is an amplification of the light energy which produces a laser beam. Laser beam requires a medium to be formed. This medium can be in any form either solid, liquid or gas and needed to be filled in ceramic or glass tube.
Types of Laser in Dentistry
The laser used in dentistry is mainly of two types:
- Hard tissue lasers: used to cut the hard tissue such as enamel, dentine, bone, etc.
- Soft tissue lasers: used to cut soft tissue of the oral cavity such as lips, cheeks, soft palate, hard palate, etc.
Role of Laser in root canal treatment
Previously, root canal treatment was only done by using drills, files, and some chemicals. At that time there was no use of lasers in dentistry. But now, lasers are frequently used in various dental procedures. Here, we are going to talk about root canal treatment by lasers.
So, Why root canal treatment? Why is RCT needed?
Root canal treatment is the only available option when you want to save your grossly decayed tooth. Or else you need to go for tooth extraction followed by dental bridges or dental implants. So when your tooth is grossly carious or the tooth pulp is involved or inflamed due to caries and if you want your tooth to be saved then only root canal treatment is the choice.
Let’s see, how lasers can be used in root canal treatment?
Cutting of enamel and dentine
Hard tissue laser is used to cut enamel and dentine if necessary for better visibility or to reach pulp chamber. It can take a long time to cut enamel and dentine as lasers are very slow compared to drills.
Removal of the pulp tissue
Soft tissue laser is used to eliminate the tooth pulp from the pulp chamber. This burns out the pulp tissue with no residue of smear layers at all.
Sterilization of root canals
Success for RCT is to remove all the bacteria and other pathogens from the root canal. Most studies have proven that using a laser in RCT to kill bacteria and other pathogens, is the most effective than a conventional method.
Filling the root canals
Some dentist or endodontist used lasers to fill root canal filling material that is “gutta-percha – a Thermo plasticized root canal filling material”. As said Thermo plasticized means it set by giving heat. So he/she used lasers for condensation of gutta-percha in root canals and has got good results. But still more researches are ongoing for the same.
Advantages of using laser in root canal treatment
Removes bacteria from root canals
The main reason for a failure of root canal treatment is the presence of bacteria in root canals even after completion of root canal treatment. It’s because of manual use of files to eliminate bacteria from the root canals. But now with lasers, you can now sterile root canals with highest success rate.
Lasers mostly avoid the use of anesthetic solutions
When your dentist or endodontist is using drills and files for root canal treatments, it is necessary to inject anesthetic solutions to make the root canal treatment procedure painless. But, now with lasers, your dentist or endodontist skip this step as he/she don’t require anesthetic solution because the laser has the capability to coagulate and seal the blood vessels which provides the same effect as the anesthetic solution does.
Say no to pain
When your dentist or endodontist use lasers, the whole root canal treatment procedures get painless.
Say no to blood
Yes, you heard right. By using lasers, the operating field can be made totally blood free. So you can say blood less root canal treatment.
Less damage to the natural structure
Higher success rate of treatment
Disadvantages of using laser in root canal treatment
Now, the main concern is money. Using the conventional method for root canal treatment requires less money whereas lasers are costly hence your treatment is costly.
Nature of laser
The laser is the form of light that travels in the straight line and the root canals in the tooth are curvy in most of the cases. So in such case laser damages the shape of the root canals and make them straight.
Note: Some researchers are now ongoing and it is said that now lasers can be passed through fiber optic in the root canals that can solve this problem.
There is a good news for the one having a phobia of pain and blood during RCT then here is the option of using a laser that prevents pain and blood during the procedure. But laser root canal treatment costs higher than the conventional root canal treatment costs.