LANAP Laser Periodontal Procedures
LANAP stands for Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure. In 2004, it was the first FDA cleared laser gum surgery to treat gum disease and backed by both clinical and laboratory research. This remarkable patented surgical protocol can only be done with the PerioLase MVP-7 made by Millennium Dental Technologies. This laser operates at a specific wavelength to attack the bacteria that cause gum disease and utilizes the body’s own natural ability to “heal itself” all while performed without a scalpel and sutures. LANAP™ creates an environment for true regeneration of the lost tissues around your teeth (gum, root cementum, periodontal ligament, and bone) that had been lost due to periodontal disease.
Traditional gum surgery utilizes scalpels and sutures (stitches) to cut away diseased or infected gum tissues. This often results in exposed root surfaces which are unesthetic, sensitive and more prone to root caries (decay). With LANAP, there is no loss of tissue volume, the gum height and thickness is preserved, and the gums reattach to the root of the tooth. With traditional surgical procedures, patients taking anticoagulants like aspirin, Plavix, Coumadin, and Xarelto would have to discontinue these crucial medications for a week prior to surgery to prevent post-op bleeding. With LANAP/LAPIP patients may continue these medications since the laser safely creates a blood clot between the tooth and gum so there is no concern about any excess post-op bleeding. This makes having periodontal treatment easier and much more safe for those taking anti-coagulant medications.
The PerioLase MVP-7 Nd:YAG laser wavelength has a stimulatory healing effect on our body tissues. It also works by targeting pigmentation, which in the case of periodontally diseased tissues, applies to not only diseased gums since they are darker than healthy gums, but also to the harmful pathogenic bacteria that cause periodontal disease since they too are pigmented. In addition, the laser also targets the calcified plaque attached to the roots of the teeth (calculus or tartar) since it is a brownish black color.
The harmful bacteria are killed just by shining the laser light on them, the diseased gum tissue is selectively removed leaving the healthy tissues intact, and the calculus is loosed from the root of the tooth using a tiny fiber about the width of three human hairs. After the laser light shines inside the periodontal pocket, fine ultrasonic instruments clean the root surface and flush out the pocket preparing the root for reattachment of the gums. The laser then closes the pocket by making a “super glue” blood clot which seals the gum tissue to the root of the tooth. This allows for healing to begin from within as our own body’s stem cells are stimulated resulting in regeneration of the lost tissues. Because of this minimally invasive targeted removal of disease, LANAP creates a faster and more comfortable healing than traditional gum surgery. Following LANAP, you can drive your car, go back to work, or do anything else you like!
- Faster Healing – LANAP is minimally invasive and allows the body to recover and heal more quickly
- Less Discomfort – Patients report less discomfort during and after surgery
- Minimal Recovery Time – Most patients can immediately return to their daily routine
- Little to No Gum Recession – Because the procedure doesn’t require cutting the gums, there is less risk of recession and your beautiful smile is maintained.
- Reduction in Gum Inflammation and Bleeding – The PerioLase MVP-7 targets inflammatory bacteria without injuring healthy tissue.
- Saves Teeth – Patients can keep their natural teeth sometimes even when the teeth have been deemed “hopeless” with traditional treatments and by other practitioners. Keeping your natural teeth has been linked to a longer lifespan!
Safe for Patients with Health Concerns – LANAP protocol is safe for patients with health concerns such as diabetes, hemophilia, those taking anticoagulant medications, autoimmune diseases, etc.
LANAP FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
Q. How do I know if I am a candidate for LANAP?
A. If you have been told that you have gum disease, notice that your teeth are loose or that your gums bleed when you brush, you very well might need gum treatment. A thorough exam, x-rays, and consultation should be performed and if your options for care will be fully discussed with you.
Q. If I smoke, can I have LANAP?
A. Yes, you are still a candidate, however healing may be impaired or delayed and the results may not be as successful as a result of the damage and inflammation that tobacco causes to the oral cavity. If you continue to smoke following LANAP, you also may not stay as stable long term.
Q. If I take blood thinners, do I need to stop my medications before LANAP?
A. Unlike traditional surgery, LANAP creates a strong blood clot that acts as a bandage to seal the gum tissue to the roots of the teeth, eliminating the need for sutures, dressings, and any worry for post-op bleeding. You do not need to discontinue your medications and in fact it is safer for you to continue your medications uninterrupted.
Q. Can I have LANAP done and then do Invisalign or braces?
A. It is critical that your gums are healthy BEFORE you begin orthodontic therapy and any active movement of your teeth. If teeth are moved in the presence of active inflammation and periodontal disease, the bone may not form properly around the teeth in the new position. This can lead to loose teeth, further shifting of the teeth and even tooth loss.
Q. Will this treatment be painful?
A. Absolutely not! You will have local anesthesia and be completely comfortable. We take our time and are sensitive to your needs as our top priority. You will be given an analgesic to take home to keep you comfortable following the procedure and you will have access to speak with Dr. Duboff after hours in case you have any questions or concerns.
Q. Will I be able to eat after LANAP?
A. Yes you should have soft foods and chew on the untreated side as much as possible for the first week following LANAP. Good nutrition following any surgical procedure aids the body in healing quickly and effectively. Keeping your fluid intake up is very important to your healing as well.
Q. Will I need to repeat LANAP every couple of years?
A. For almost all patients this is a one time procedure, however it is critical that you maintain proper oral hygiene at home and keep up with your regularly scheduled dental hygiene appointments to ensure your stability. If you smoke, have a compromised immune system, or take steroid medications, you could experience some changes in your stability, however with proper monitoring, if any early change is detected, it can usually be treated and resolved before needing full LANAP again.
Q. Can I smoke after having LANAP?
A. Tobacco has a very large effect on your gums and the disease you have in them. It is associated with increased bone loss and the space between the gums and teeth. Any type of smoking or chewing tobacco will have an adverse effect on your healing and may cause the gum disease to reoccur after treatment. If you smoke or chew tobacco, we highly recommend that you do not do so while you are healing. If you are interested in trying to stop smoking or using tobacco, Dr. Harasty Duboff would be happy to discuss this with you and provide information and resources to help you effectively quit.