Air Abrasion (No Drill-Minimally Invasive Dentistry)
Air abrasion is a drill-less technique that can be used to remove tooth decay and for other applications.
How Does Air Abrasion Work?
An instrument that works like a mini-sandblaster is used to spray away decay. During air abrasion, a fine stream of particles is aimed at the decayed portion of the tooth. These particles are made of aluminum oxide and are propelled toward the tooth surface by compressed air or a gas that runs through the dental handpiece. Small particles of decay on the tooth surface are removed as the stream of particles strikes them. The particles of decay are then "suctioned" away.
Is Air Abrasion Safe?
Yes. The only precaution needed before air abrasion is protective eyewear (to prevent eye irritation from the spray).
What Are the Advantages of Air Abrasion?
Compared with the traditional drilling method, the advantages of air abrasion are many and include the following:
· Air abrasion generates no heat, sound, pressure or vibration.
· Air abrasion can usually be used without anesthesia, particularly if the cavity is shallow.
· Air abrasion leaves much more of the healthy tooth tissue behind.
· Air abrasion reduces the risk of micro-fracturing and chipping of the tooth.
· Air abrasion allows the dentist to treat multiple sites in the mouth during a single visit.
· The procedure is relatively simple and quick.
What Are the Disadvantages?
· Air abrasion is not necessarily totally painless. The air can cause sensitivity.
· Air abrasion is best suited for removing small cavities that form on the surface of teeth.
Who Are the Best Candidates for Air Abrasion Procedures?
Air abrasion is ideal for use in children and adults who are fearful and have minimal decay.
What Other Types of Procedures Are Performed With Air Abrasion?
Air abrasion can also be used to:
· Remove old restorations, including small silver amalgam fillings
· Prepare a tooth surface for bonding
· Remove superficial stains and tooth discolorations
Leading Edge Dental Center
Michael A. Goone, DDS
4355 W. Howard Street
Skokie, IL 60076