New Dental Laser Could Reduce Gum Disease without Antibiotics

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Antibiotics could become a thing of the past where chronic gum disease is concerned, all thanks to a new dental laser that blasts away bacteria in the mouth.

Perioblast, also known as periodontal biological laser-assisted therapy, is described by researcher and dentist Dr Francesco Martelli as a treatment that can significantly improve gum disease, even in aggressive cases.

Usually caused by poor oral hygiene, gum disease is the result of bacterial overgrowth and in its most severe forms it can require years of uncomfortable dental work to clear the infection away.  Many gum disease patients end up losing teeth, either through extraction or simply as a natural result of the disease.

This new treatment analyses oral bacteria and identifies possible hereditary risk factors. Conventional therapies such as root planing and scale and polish are also carried out during Perioblast treatment. Then, the dentist ‘irradiates’ the gums using an Nd:YAG laser. The gums are protected by a special solution which absorbs the light, so the dentist can see the bacteria under a microscope.

To make sure the mouth has a good balance of oral bacteria, probiotics may be prescribed if necessary.

Dr Martelli presenting compelling evidence in favour of Perioblast. It was effective in 2,683 British and Italian cases, seen by 60 dentists. That said, the private clinic that offers the treatment did admit that it only reduces bacteria levels to make them more manageable and is not a guaranteed cure for gum disease.

55 year old estate agent Bill Thomson is just one patient who has benefitted from Perioblast treatment. He had suffered for 15 years with receding and bleeding gums and had previously been told that he faced losing his teeth as a result of his condition.

On hearing about Perioblast, Mr Thomson booked an appointment at the IMI Clinic in Leeds. He said though the treatment was slightly uncomfortable, it didn’t cause him pain. Mr Thomson’s infection was greatly reduced and he is pleased with the outcome.

Dr Martelli is hopeful that eventually, Perioblast will be available as an NHS treatment.

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