A few days ago we announced Downtown Dental now offers WaterLase iPlus Laser Dentistry which provides injection-free, pain-free dentistry for many of our procedures including fillingswhitening and gum disease prevention. Since our announcement, we’ve heard from several patients who are excited to try the new procedure at their next visit. Not surprisingly, many of them have asked the same question, “So how does it work?” At the same time, we realize that some of you might be skeptical of the pain-free WaterLase iPlus Laser. Today, we are providing a quick reasoning of how and why it works.

How the WaterLase iPlus Laser anesthetizes a tooth:

To understand why most dental work is painful, we must first understand how pain impulses work. Any pain you experience is caused by an electrical impulse that moves through nerve fibers from the source of the pain to your brain.  This impulse is a result of different ions moving into and out of the nerve fiber cells through gates.  When something hurts, the gates open, ions move, and the pain impulse starts. One way the WaterLase iPlus Laser prevents pain is by it's energy temporarily closing the ion gates.  If the ion gates cannot open, no impulse can travel to the brain to be perceived as pain, thus providing anesthesia.

The WaterLase iPlus Laser avoids contact and friction.

While the Laser provides a natural anesthetic, it also helps prevent pain and shots with a new, frictionless method. A normal dental drill works with friction, which causes heat and triggers pain. This leads to painful visits to the dentist and/or visits that leave your mouth feeling number after receiving anesthetic shots. The WaterLase uses a unique, powerful interaction of the patented YSGG laser wavelength along with trademarked water/air spray that cuts, etches and shapes target tissues without contact to remove tooth structure and decay. This means there is no heat, friction or pressure to cause the nerve to fire an impulse to your brain. Here’s a look at how it works: Laser   The procedures can be done painlessly with no anesthetic. Because there is no friction, there is no pain or reason for anesthetics. Because the laser acts as an anesthetic, there is usually no need for a shot, which means leaving the doctor’s office without any numbing. Its non-contact method will guarantee you won’t feel any pain even after the procedures is finished. If you want to know why we’ve invested in the future of pain-free dentistry, read this. If you want to make sure the WaterLase iPlus Laser is used during your next dental appointment, simply let us know when scheduling your next appointment. For more information on WaterLase and how it works, click here.
Health & Smiles If you're like us, you're shocked at how quickly the middle of January arrived. It seems like just yesterday we were counting down the last seconds of 2012 and ringing in the New Year. Now, Target it already selling swimsuits in stores! Weren't we also just deciding our New Year's goals? While you may have made several resolutions for various areas of your life, we think it's safe to say that one of those areas is probably related to your health. In fact, the most common resolution Americans made in 2013 was to eat healthy and exercise regularly.

We care about more than just your teeth.

Our staff's commitment to educating and advocating our patients to their best advantage doesn't stop with your pearly whites. We believe committing to total body health will help our families, patients, neighbors, and, frankly, the city of Nashville live fuller, richer lives!

But, before you hit the play button on Physical by Olivia Newton-John, let us share two other ways you can commit to total body health in addition to hitting the gym this year from our area of expertise: your teeth.

Maintaining a clean mouth can keep your body healthy. There are several studies showing good teeth do more than keep dental bills low - they can help protect you from a whole host of health problems.

Clean teeth can help prevent heart disease.

This study published in the British Medical Journal analyzed data from over 11,000 adults. It determined that participants who reported brushing their teeth less frequently had a 70% increased risk of heart disease versus those who brushed twice daily.

Clean teeth can keep your lungs healthy.

Could proper dental hygiene help you to breath better? Possibly so. Another study published in the Journal of Periodontology uncovered a suspected link between periodontal disease and pulmonary disease (such as pneumonia and acute bronchitis).

As you continue to achieve your 2013 healthy goals, don't forget that your teeth can play an important role in your overall health throughout the year.

Stay tuned over the next several months as we partner with our patients and downtown Nashville to help them commit to making 2013 the healthiest year yet.