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Laser Dentistry: Treatments, Benefits & Myths

Laser Dentistry: Treatments, Benefits & Myths

Laser dentistry has been in use for more than 25 years. With FDA approval they are a safe treatment option for several procedures. Here, our Etobicoke dentists explain how they work and the benefits.


Laser dentistry provides another approach to some soft and hard tissue procedures. Lasers offer accuracy, less bleeding, and potentially less discomfort than traditional dental tools, such as drills. As some patients are intimidated or uncomfortable with a dental drill, they may avoid procedures that they need. The laser provides a different experience, often allowing anxious patients to receive the treatment without worry.

How do dental lasers work?

By channelling energy into light, dental lasers work as a cutting instrument, a vaporizer, or in the process of teeth whitening, a heat source.

What can lasers treat?

  • Tooth decay
  • Teeth whitening
  • Gum disease
  • Biopsies and lesion removal
  • Tooth hypersensitivity

Benefits of Laser Dentistry

  • Precise instruments
  • Lasers can be used in place of drills
  • Bleeding can be more controlled
  • Reduced pain, minimizes discomfort
  • Less damage to surrounding tissues
  • Faster healing times
  • The laser sterilizes the treatment area, reducing the chance of infection

How safe are dental lasers?

Every laser is tested and approved by the FDA for its effectiveness and safety. Each laser system is meant to address a particular issue or procedure, and dentists must be trained on each laser system they operate. You will be provided with glasses to protect your eyes from the light.

Common Myths & Misconceptions

  1. PROCEDURES TAKE LONGER. This may have been true years ago, but with several decades of development, dental lasers are now as quick as traditional tools, if not quicker. Also, as many procedures can be done without anesthesia, the overall process can be significantly shorter.
  2. LASERS ARE UNSAFE. As mentioned above, they are actually very safe. They are tested, produce less discomfort for many procedures, and require specific training to operate.
  3. LASERS CAN CAUSE CANCER. Dental lasers do not use radiation. Rather, they use amplified light, which is similar to common light, making it less harmful than sunlight.
  4. IT IS MORE EXPENSIVE. While the equipment is more expensive than traditional tools, they are able to address issues with fewer appointments, meaning the resulting cost is typically about the same. With reduced chances of infection, you likely won't have to revisit the dentist to treat secondary issues. And with less need for anesthesia, the cost is further reduced.

To learn more about laser dentistry options, or to request an appointment, contact our Etobicoke dentists at Royal York Dental.


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