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Keywords:

  • Laser;
  • fluoride;
  • erosion;
  • enamel

Abstract

Background: Erosion is the loss of dental hard tissues from an acidic challenge, often resulting in exposure of dentinal tubules and hypersensitivity to environmental stimuli. Laser-activated fluoride (LAF) therapy with 488nm laser energy has been shown previously to increase the resistance of human enamel and dentine to acid dissolution. The aims of this study were to investigate the action spectrum of LAF in protecting tooth enamel from softening in response to an erosive challenge, and to examine for any temperature change with the treatment.

Materials and Methods: Buccal and lingual surfaces of extracted sound molar and premolar teeth were used to prepare matched pairs of enamel slabs (N=10 per group). After application of 1.23% neutral sodium fluoride gel (12 300ppm F ion), slab surfaces were lased with 488, 514.5, 532, 633, 670, 830 or 1064nm wavelength (energy density 15J/cm2; spot size 5mm), then exposed to an erosive challenge (1.0M HCl for five minutes). The Vicker's hardness number (VHN) was recorded before fluoride gel application and again following the acid challenge. Negative controls did not receive laser exposure.

Results: All wavelengths of laser light examined provided a protective LAF effect against softening, compared with the negative control surfaces.

Conclusion: From these findings, we conclude that the action spectrum of the LAF effect extends across the visible spectrum, providing protection to dental enamel from an erosive challenge.