Laser Treatment for Ulcers & Cold Sores
Laser therapy has been used in dentistry for a number of years to treat gum disease, reshape gum tissue for a more balanced smile and even to detect tooth decay. Now, Woodlands laser dentist Dr. Taylor can use laser treatment for mouth ulcers and cold sores. Laser treatment, also called laser therapy, has proven to be highly effective and offers several advantages over traditional treatments.
What is a Mouth Ulcer?
A mouth ulcer is commonly known as a canker sore. The dental term for these is Aphthous ulcers and they are often painful sores that develop inside the cheeks and lips, on the tongue or on the palate (roof of the mouth). Most of the time they are small round ulcers that are either white or yellow and may have a red border. They can become very painful if you happen to catch one between your teeth as you bite or while you are speaking. Dentists are not certain why they develop, but they often show up as a result of stress, lack of sleep or accidentally biting soft tissue. Spicy or acidic foods can lead to a canker sore or make one worse, and certain medical conditions are associated with Aphthous ulcers including Celiac disease, inflammatory bowel diseases, a faulty immune system and immunosuppressive illnesses such as HIV/AIDS.
What is a Cold Sore?
Cold sores or fever blisters are small fluid-filled sacks that typically develop in clusters on the lips or near the mouth. They are caused by a herpes simplex virus (HSV-1) and are contagious even if the sores are not visible. Once a person has contracted the virus, it remains present but inactive most of the time. However, the virus can be reactivated by triggers that include stress, illness, sun and wind exposure or injury to the affected area.
Before an outbreak, many people notice certain warning signs at the site such as a tingling sensation, itching, pain or even a fever, sore throat or swollen glands.
Laser Treatment for Canker Sores and Cold Sores
With laser dentistry, Woodlands dentist Dr. Taylor is able to reduce the pain of both mouth ulcers or cold sores and shorten the healing time. Laser treatment stimulates the growth of cells that play an integral role in wound healing. Thus, the size of these lesions is more rapidly reduced and the healing process is accelerated. Many patients experience pain relief immediately after laser treatment and in some cases, cold sores can be prevented entirely if treatment happens during the early warning stages.