A wonderful development in periodontal treatment is the use of a laser to regenerate tissue. Utilizing the body’s own natural ability to “heal itself”, Dr. Pearl Lai utilizes the PerioLase™ for the Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure (LANAP™). Performed without a scalpel and sutures, LANAP™ creates an environment for regeneration of the tissues around your teeth (gum, bone, cementum, ligament) that are lost due to periodontal disease.

The laser therapy works by targeting only diseased gum, which it discerns by the color. Diseased gums are darker than healthy gums. The laser is then used to agitate the healthy tissue, encouraging it to reattach to the bone. Because of the regrowth of this connective tissue, there is also a much lower chance of gum disease returning.

Due to the ability of the laser to target and select diseased tissue, Dr. Pearl Lai is able to treat you with minimal postoperative pain and fewer side effects and risks than traditional surgery. This is in conjunction with a detailed homecare program that is described below.

LANAP™ Post-Operative Information and Instructions

  • Antimicrobial rinses and antibiotic medications may be prescribed for you. Take any prescribed medications according to directions and continue taking until all meds are gone.
  • Reduce physical activity for several hours following surgery.
  • Periodontal laser procedures usually result in little or no discomfort following surgery.
  • For the first 24 hour period immediately following surgery, take two (2) Advil or Motrin (Ibuprofen) every 4-6 hours to help with inflammation even if you do not have any pain. (Do not take Ibuprofen and Motrin if your physician has specifically said not to, if you’re allergic or if you have a sensitive stomach and have ulcers.) You may discuss this more with Dr. Lai.
  • For the first 72 hours immediately following surgery, stay on a liquid diet only. For the following 7-28 days after surgery, a soft diet is recommended. Try to eat soft but nutritious foods such as eggs, yogurt, cottage cheese, malts, ice cream, etc. Stay away from spicy and “crunchy” foods. It is also important to maintain good fluid intake during this period.
  • One of the most important results of laser surgery is the blood clots that form following surgery. It is extremely important not to dislodge the tiny clots that form in and around the gums.
  • Do not be alarmed with any color changes or appearance of tissues following laser therapy.  Tissues can be slightly white, gray, yellow, red, purple, “stringy” and reflect normal response to laser treatments.
  • Please avoid spitting, rinsing, and washing your mouth on the day of your surgery.
  • For one week following surgery, you may rinse very gently as directed with Peridex or Periogard morning and night but do not brush. During this time we do not recommend you use other forms of mouth rinse.
  • Your doctor will give you a post-surgical toothbrush to use. (If you do not have one you may use a child-size soft toothbrush.) You may start using this one week after surgery, with toothpaste. At this point, you may discontinue the rinse.
  • You may start flossing one month after the procedure. At this point it is very important to control plaque and bacteria, so daily flossing is encouraged. Without adequate plaque control you are at higher risk of getting reinfection of the gum tissue.
  • Do not apply excessive tongue or cheek pressure to the surgery area.

Do not be alarmed if one of the following occurs:

  • Light bleeding
  • Slight swelling
  • Some soreness, tenderness, or tooth sensitivity
  • Medicinal taste, from Peridex or Periogard

Please call the office at 303-529-6577 if you are experiencing any of the following signs and symptoms:

  • Prolonged or severe pain
  • Prolonged or excessive bleeding
  • Considerably elevated or persistent temperature

Do not be alarmed that beginning within two weeks after therapy and extending as long as one year or more, the teeth may become sore, tender, or sensitive as the bone and ligaments around the teeth heal and become more firm.  This is a sign of healing but may also indicate the presence of a bite imbalance that may need to be adjusted. If it is persistent, please call.

Please remember that while regeneration is quite possible, there are no guarantees that in your specific situation regeneration will occur. Having LANAP still provides a great benefit to your body and overall health by eliminating the overgrowth of bacteria present and helping the body heal with a cleaner environment. It is imperative to keep the remaining healthy bone structure present in your mouth and even if some of the bone that has already been lost does not grow back, removing the bacterial overgrowth and stimulating the immune system for healing will only assist you in this process.

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us! Boulder Dental Designs offers quality periodontal treatment, restorative dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, and family dentistry in Boulder, Colorado

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