Plainview Dentist Offers Pain-FreeTechnology To The South Plains - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

10/3/03

Plainview Dentist Offers Pain-FreeTechnology To The South Plains

How long has it been since you've seen a dentist? If you're dragging your feet because you expect it to be painful then you might be interested in knowing the newest technology in dentistry is pain-free but you have to drive to Plainview to get it.

Everything seems louder at the dentist's office because we listen for clues to what will happen next. But at Dr. Ricky Cross's office, patient Virginia Williams is not worried, she's done this before. She has two more cavities to be filled with no needles, no anesthesia and no pain. You see, it may sound like a drill but it's not, it's a laser. It takes just five to ten minutes per tooth to remove decay and reshape the tooth in a patient whose mouth isn't even numb.

Dr. Cross says that when he tells his patients that he will not be using anesthesia, they're cautious. They're surprised. Often, he's finished before they realize anything has been started. The technology is called Waterlase. Unless you go to Amarillo or Fort Worth, the closest place you can get it around here is the high tech office of Dr. Ricky Cross in Plainview. So, why is that?

He explains that some people are skeptical about new technology because so many things in dentistry come and go. They may think it's not as good as it seems to be but that it actually is.

So, what does Virginia think after getting two cavities filled? She says that there is no comparison and that it is absolutely wonderful. She adds that getting your teeth cleaned is more painful than this. Pain-free dentistry is not the only advantage of the Waterlase, made by Biolase. It costs the same as the drill, you can treat lots of cavities in one appointment because nothing in numb. You can use the laser for more serious procedures, even a root canal.

Dr. Cross explains that a laser energy comes out with a pulse of water to spray and wash away debris from the decay and keep the tooth cool and comfortable. Heat and vibration are the causes of most of the pain associated with the drill. Since cutting the tooth with Waterlase technology does not cause heat or vibration, most dental procedures can be performed with no pain, virtually eliminating the need for anesthesia in most cases. The Waterlase removes decay very precisely which allows you to keep a healthy tooth structure and have healthier teeth longer. It effectively performs numerous soft tissue (gums) procedures with little or no bleeding and gives your dentist a new high-tech tool for many procedures that previously required referral to a specialist.

Now you can have them performed during your scheduled appointment. The Waterlase avoids many common problems of the high speed drill, including cracks in the teeth from the vibration and rapid turning of the drill burrs which can weaken your teeth, creating future problems. It decontaminates as it cuts reducing the chance for bacterial contamination and prepares your teeth in a way that maximizes the bonding of tooth colored fillings, allowing them to last longer.

In the hands of your trained dentist, the Waterlase is as safe as other medical devices. The laser provides pinpoint accuracy, reducing the chance of causing damage to healthy tissues. The primary safety measure necessary during laser treatment is proper protective glasses.

( Click here) for a complete list of FDA cleared procedures.

To send your questions to Dr. Ricky Cross's office, (click here).

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