Dr. Linden’s Response to Mayo Clinic Health Letter Article on Periodontal Disease

Article is on Page Four of this PDF.

Dr. Linden’s response, in a letter to the editors of the publication:

The article on Periodontal Disease was quite informative and clearly written.  While I am in agreement with various treatments included in the health letter, I would like to bring your attention to important information that was not included.   In the last 10 years the introduction and use of laser therapy has played a significant role in the treatment of  periodontal and implant disease.  This modality is extremely effective and less invasive than “traditional” methods of treatment as described in the article. The percentage of Periodontists utilizing a laser approach is approximately  25-50% internationally.  There are many different wavelength lasers that are currently used in a periodontal practice.  Although laser trained periodontists may utilize  “traditional” treatments, the laser approach is often more effective, less invasive, and often provides regeneration of bone tissue around the diseased teeth and implants. The laser targets the “bad or pathogenic” bacteria, reduces inflammation, and preserves the good tissue that is needed for regeneration of healthy gum tissue and new bone.

Posted in Periodontal Treatment

My tooth is grey but isn’t dead. If I got braces, would this affect my treatment?

Q: 6 months ago one of my side canines became darker than the rest of my teeth. I consulted a private root canal specialist. A number of tests/x rays confirmed that the tooth is vital and alive. I’m thinking about getting braces and wondered if this situation would affect my treatment? The tooth has never hurt and doesn’t give me any pain whatsoever.

A: If the endodontist concluded that your discolored teeth were vital and alive, then moving ahead with your braces (orthodontic treatment) should be fine, with the stipulation that you are monitored every month by the endodontist.

Posted in Related Procedures

One month following root canal it hurts to chew hard things and is sensitive to touch. What options do I have to treat this?

Q: I got a root canal 2 months ago. I had a crown on the tooth so the dentist went through the crown. A week after the RC, I had discomfort when I chewed food or touched one side of the tooth. It went away until 2 weeks ago when the pain came back. Now it hurts to chew hard things, sensitive to touch the tooth with my tongue, toothbrush, etc. The pain is worse in different parts of the tooth. I wear a night guard. I’m out of my dental insurance for the year so I’m not sure what options I have.

A: If the root canal tooth is hurting, particularly when you bite down on food or simply touch it, then there is a good chance that the tooth could be fractured or the bite is excessive on the tooth. I would suggest a consultation with an experienced periodontist to get an opinion.

Posted in Related Procedures

My permanent bridge doesn’t fit. It’s fallen off twice and I need a new one. What can I do?

Q: My permanent, 6-unit bridge does not fit and has come off 2 times. After almost a year of treatment, the doctor doesn’t know what to do. He told me he’ll make a bridge a 3rd time and send it to the lab. Last week he told me I need an implant. If I say no to that, he may try to change my plan. I have already spent a lot and don’t know what to do.

A: Sounds like there is a problem with the fit of the new bridge? I would seek a 2nd opinion from a prosthodontist (specialist in bridges) and see what they can tell you about your dental issues and how to rectify them.

Posted in Dental Implants

Would it be beneficial for me to get laser gum surgery? I hate my small teeth and gummy smile.

Q: What else could I do to get a better smile? Veneers or luminescent after laser?

A: It might be possible to have cosmetic laser gum surgery to attain a better appearance when you smile. The important thing is to have the appropriate laser used (with the correct wavelength) so there won’t be any damage to underlying bone and supporting structures in the mouth. It is also advisable to seek the services of an experienced laser periodontist who uses multiple lasers so you can have the safest laser for your treatment.

Posted in Crown Lengthening