Keene, NH dentist provides LANAP laser periodontal surgery
In its earliest stages, periodontal disease presents very few, if any, symptoms. When it is left undiagnosed and untreated, the bacterial infection can damage the bone, teeth, and gums. In fact, the leading cause of tooth loss in adults is periodontal disease, or “gum disease.” At Monadnock Perio and Implant Center of Keene, NH, Drs. Tae Kwon and Howard Yen utilize modern therapies to effectively treat this condition and revitalize one’s oral health and wellness. We use laser periodontal treatment known as LANAP laser gum surgery.
Understanding the LANAP dental procedure
LANAP is an acronym that stands for “Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure.” This is a surgery performed for patients who have developed the later stages of periodontitis. Instead of using a scalpel, we use modern laser dentistry to achieve results, removing diseased tissue and revitalizing the gum tissues. This FDA-approved treatment is best for patients who have severe cases of gum disease.
How does LANAP laser gum surgery work?
As gum disease enters the later stages of development, it can result in the separation of the gum tissues from the natural teeth. This causes the formation of pockets that can keep bacteria trapped where it can grow and multiply. Without treatment or intervention, significant damage can result, ultimately ending in the loss of natural adult teeth. With the LANAP procedure, diseased tissue is removed, and the gums are regenerated and reattached to the teeth to address the changes that have occurred from periodontitis.
What are the benefits of the LANAP dental procedure?
- Less bleeding than with traditional scaling and root planing
- No need for stitches after the procedure
- More conservative treatment that preserves more gum tissue
- Faster healing and recovery
- Less invasive procedure that is also much more comfortable for the patient
LANAP - a safe and effective treatment method for gum disease and the resultant bone loss.
So one of the classic signs of periodontal diseases is the bone loss. So the teeth are actually sitting in the jawbone and the jawbone is holding your teeth. And as the periodontal disease progresses, the tooth start losing the bone. Conventionally, you know, regenerative therapy, we’re trying to regenerate this bone using, making an incision using blade, clean out the defect and then buy some artificial bone grafting material. And then we place them into the defect. And then hoping that this bone will turn into your bone.
And it requires a lot of, surgical time is very long. It carries a lot of swelling during the recovery and some pain. And then you require a lot of stitches too, which sometimes make the patient a little bit difficult to accept using …
Because of LANAP therapy, it completely changed the way I practice this regenerative therapy. So what it does is the laser has very specific eyes and eyes in differentiating tissues that are not healthy versus healthy, and they selectively remove these tissues that are not healthy. And everything is done through this laser fiber that is probably the diameter of three hair follicles. And then we just literally make an incision using this laser fiber. And after we disinfect these gum or diseased gum, we try to stimulate the underlying tissues to regenerate your own bone, patient’s own bone as opposed to using somebody else’s bone. At the end, instead of putting stitches, we actually use specific laser therapy to make a little clot seal so that we can eliminate any need for stitches. And what it does is virtually remove the pain to, from, let’s say, 10 to one or even zero.
Patient can function normally during the recovery. And the beauty is, since we didn’t put any bone material in, anything that we grow in there, we are confident that it is patient’s own bone. My first line of treatment is actually using laser before I use any conventional regenerative therapy with flapping and incisions and bone graft.
So I’ll show you some cases that I treated at my practice using this technique and I hope you can see the true benefit of this laser treatment. The first patient that I want to talk is a patient named Kathy, and she presented with a severe, severely loose tooth. And then there was a bad odor from the tooth. And then there were a lot of pain and some abscess and bleeding on this tooth and the patient came and then I said, “You know what? This is a perfect case that we can actually use the laser therapy.” And as you can see, as soon as I pulled the instrument in, there was a profuse bleeding which indicated disease. And when you look at the radiograph or X-ray, you can clearly see there is an area that is circled that is dark. The darkness in the bone means less density, which means bone loss. And this is the bone loss that we deal with when somebody gets periodontal diseases. So when you look at Before and After, and we did a laser therapy, probably took us about 30 to 45 minutes. And you can clearly see that darkness on the X-ray disappear or a result indicating possible regeneration of the bone. And remember, we didn’t put any bone material in and the patient had virtually no pain.
Another case is, next case is patient Nicole. She’s a college student at Kent State, and then she was actually coming from Connecticut. And it was around the time that, when she came, she presented with severe pain and there she was doing her final exam, and then she said she cannot study because of the pain. And after I did a little more interview with Nicole, I realized that her general dentist in Connecticut actually gave her a little syringe where she can flush the gum pocket because, the pain was so severe and an abscess was coming all the time. So obviously, she couldn’t function. So, I looked at it and then when you look at the X-ray, the same thing, there was a lot of bone loss indicated by darkness around the tooth. After the treatment, we get that. So you can clearly see the bone actually regenerate, indicating the darkness on the bone is completely gone. And again, very minimally painful, minimally painful. There’s virtually no pain. And the patient never had to use the syringe again in front of her friends. Sometimes, it can be embarrassing. And in the area has never been a problem since.
And the next patient is Karen. Karen was kind of interesting. She’s a mid-aged female patient, and she has what because of her dental bridge. So this tooth that she’s having constantly having swelling, red gum, pain, and abscess and bleeding. This tooth was actually supporting a bridge. So if you lose this tooth, a lot of time, the whole bridge needs to be remade, and then we’re looking at dental implants or partial dentures or something that is more aggressive. And she was initially recommended for extraction to take this tooth out, but she was very hesitant because of possible need for dental implants and other treatment. So I say, “You know what, before we sacrifice this tooth, why don’t we try this laser therapy to see if we can rescue this? And if we do, we are rescuing the whole bridge.” So when you look at this clinical photo, you can clearly see the gum is extremely red, indicating severe disease. And then on the X-ray, you can clearly see huge darkness around this tooth. Well, let’s see what happened. When she came back for a follow-up in nine months, I couldn’t believe what I saw. You can totally see some changes in the bone and bone was started growing. The area never became red and the patient was pain-free and now is most likely, it looks like we can save this bridge for another many years. So she was very thrilled and then I continually believe that this bone growth will continue for the next six to 12 months.
Next patient is Kathy. She came in with a loose tooth and she was, it was kind of interesting because she’s a musician, and one day she said, “I can’t really play my instrument because I’m really worried about this front tooth.” This front tooth was extremely loose. And she was recommended for extraction of possibly two teeth or one tooth in the front because of this loose tooth. However, she was a little bit hesitant with going with an implant because the front area in the lower jaw is extremely difficult to do implant therapy because there’s no implant that will fit here precisely, because the tooth is so small. So we say, “You know what? Why don’t we try this laser therapy again?” And guess what? When I saw for her for the follow-up, the bone was growing back and then now, instead of talking about having one or two implants, which is extremely invasive and also costly, we clearly saved these teeth.
Next patient, this is Susan. She is a mid-aged woman and that same thing, she had a bleeding and loose tooth and a bit of an abscess from this tooth. You can clearly see there are some darkness around this tooth, and we did a laser therapy and we got that; the bone is growing back.
And I’m going to show you some series of cases. This is Alan. Alan had this tooth with a very large pocket, and then you can kind of see on the X-ray, there’s a darkness around this tooth. And after the laser therapy, you can see the bone is growing back. So, you can kind of see the similar pattern that are happening. And then again, these are all my cases.
This is Kelley, she is young, young female and then she was going through her braces. And the orthodontist says, “Hey Tae, there’s some problem with the tooth and the patient is losing bone.” And I said, “No problem”. And we did laser therapy and again, the bone is growing back. And it’s in the front area, so you can imagine that it will be very difficult if she loses it as a result of periodontal diseases.
This is Susan. Susan is female, mid-aged and she was having recurring infections on this area. She couldn’t actually chew and the same pattern. We did the laser therapy and you can clearly see the darkness around the bone is disappearing such as in regeneration.
I’m going to finish off with my case, my favorite case, Samantha. All the cases you have seen are changes in the bone. When I met Samantha, she was referred from my good friend, a French general dentist, and she was extremely concerned about her aesthetics. And then she had a wedding coming up, probably in six to 12 months, and she was always afraid of smiling a little bit. And I asked her why and then she was saying, “The gap between these two teeth, I never had it. And over time, somehow this gap is growing, growing, and growing.” And when she smiles, it looks like she’s missing a tooth in the front. And secondly, her gum was extremely, extremely swollen and red. You can see on the photo that gum looks very swollen, and her teeth were extremely loose. So I said, “You know what? Why don’t we do some laser therapy?” Because the reason is, that one of the classic signs of severe periodontal diseases is teeth migrating away from each other. And usually it’s very common on the front teeth, because the pressure from the gums swelling pushes the teeth away. And when I see after the laser treatment, when I saw her, she was extremely happy. This is only after six weeks, and you can clearly see the gap has already reduced and now she can smile. And this is when I saw what I do sometimes can change not only patients’ health, but patients’ quality of life. It changes her smile and it gives her the confidence back. And then now, she just got married. I just saw her a few days for a follow-up. She just got married and then she’s extremely happy with all the wedding photos that she took. And more than appearing in implants after, we are trying to adapt any latest technologies that we can, especially in this case, laser treatment to improve and get the optimal result with minimally invasive concept. And if you have any question, or if you want to know about this procedure a little bit more, please ask us any time and we will be more than happy to answer any questions. And thanks again for your confidence in our practice, and I truly appreciate all your support.
Are you in need of treatment for periodontal disease?
Learn more about the laser periodontal treatment called LANAP available at Monadnock Perio and Implant Center of Keene, NH. We are here to help at our practice, conveniently located at 819 Court Street, Unit A and serve patients in the counties of Cheshire and Monadnock. Our board-certified periodontists can be reached by calling (603) 215-5800 and scheduling a consultation.