The American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons estimated that 69% of adults ages 35 to 44 have lost at least one permanent tooth. Dental implants have revolutionized dentistry by providing tooth-like replacement for missing teeth and a solution that is predictable with long-term success..
After the implant is placed, natural bacteria from the mouth can develop around implants just like around natural teeth. Studies have shown that bacterial contamination can cause peri-implantitis- gum disease or inflammation around the implant, eventually leading to bone loss. Removing bacteria from dental implant surfaces can prevent peri-implantitis, and surface debridement constitutes the basis of treatment of peri-implant disease.
Typically, mechanical hand instrumentation using curettes to remove biofilm and calculus is the main basis for periodontal therapy. However, total debridement is difficult, and the hand tools may damage the surface of the implant and making it more plaque retentive. Studies have shown that mechanical non-surgical therapy alone is not sufficient to treat peri-implantitis.
There is evidence that a dental laser may be an effective method to remove bacteria from implant surfaces, with less damage to the surface. One type of dental laser, Er:YAG, appears optimal for implant decontamination as the Er:YAG laser energy is primarily absorbed by water, resulting in vaporization of bacteria and minimal surface alterations on the implant surface.The aim of this study is to evaluate the efficiency of biofilm decontamination of Er:YAG laser compared to carbon fiber curette.