Periodontal disease affects millions of Americans, yet many people postpone or avoid seeking gum disease treatment because of the innate invasiveness of traditional surgery. This trend is especially disconcerting given the link between periodontal disease and other serious health problems like diabetes, stroke, heart disease, and low birth weight babies. Researchers have also discovered that a history of gum disease can dramatically increase an individual’s risk of pancreatic cancer by 64%. It is imperative to seek gum disease treatment as soon as possible to preserve your oral as well as overall health and wellbeing.
Fortunately, advancements in technology now enable dentists like Dr. Todd McCracken in Denton, Texas, to remove the bacteria without cutting or removing healthy gum tissue. Dental professionals who offer the Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure use the PerioLase® MVP-7™, the only FDA cleared laser, to achieve this feat. Laser gum surgery is a less invasive and less painful gum disease treatment option that requires far less healing time than traditional surgery because of LANAP®’s ability to target only the infected gum tissue. In fact, patients can return to work and resume their daily activities immediately after the procedure, which can usually be completed in two visits that last about two hours each.
Prior to LANAP®, a common option for gum disease treatment was traditional surgery, sometimes referred to as flap surgery. Flap surgery involves the amputation of the gum tissue and the reshaping of the bone. When flap surgery is used by the dentist for gum disease treatment, the gum is lifted and rolled back to allow the doctor to remove tarter and diseased gum tissue. Following this step, it is often necessary to plane and reshape the bone to decrease pits and uneven areas where bacteria tend to grow. The final step in traditional surgery used by the dentist for gum disease treatment entails the suturing of the gum flap in a position that reduces the periodontal pocket depth. Since dentists use scalpels and stiches when performing this gum disease treatment, the process is inherently more painful and uncomfortable than laser gum surgery and the healing time is significantly longer.