Updated: Oct 11, 2018
The teeth are in constant chemical attack by microorganisms, which cause visible changes in structure and permanent damage requiring removal of the affected areas. As is known, this procedure is carried out by teams of airotor, causing pain, are invasive and circumferential areas affecting constituents. In recent years the laser has been introduced as a means of removing decay, showing advantages as cleaning, selectivity and decreased pain. An important improvement for these equipments would be having a monitoring system that accurately indicates the kind of tissue being removed. We propose the use of the LIBS (Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy) technique in real time as a method of detection of diseased tissue.The chemical composition of healthy and diseased tissue was been analyzed, establishing clear differences in their elemental compositions and allowing identification of the tissue. The excitation source is a laser device emitting trains of pulses whose intensity and temporal spacing increase the excitation of the chemical species and consequently improve the signal-noise ratio. For its compactness and low cost, the device would be easily integrated to a dental laser system.
The highest fluency and the shortest duration of the pulses obtained by a multi-pulse laser with a Q-switch enabled more efficient ablation of the material than that obtained in the free-generation mode.
On the other hand, the quality of the voids―characterized by the non-existence of remains or edges caused by the ablation process―were obviously improved as a result of the multi-pulse mode, which was an expected result due to shorter duration of the pulses and, therefore, heat transfer with a consequent thermal effect. If we take into account that multi-pulse irradiation was obtained using a Q-switch, which is characterized by its simplicity, low cost and robustness, the potential of using this laser emission regime in dentistry becomes evident.