Objective: To test the hypothesis that there is no difference in the pain associated with orthodontic force application after the application of local CO2 laser irradiation to the teeth involved. Materials and Methods: Separation modules were placed at the distal contacts of the maxillary first molars in 90 patients in this single-blinded study. In 60 of these patients (42 females and 18 males; mean age = 19.22 years) this was immediately followed by laser therapy. The other 30 patients (18 females and 12 males; mean age = 18.8 years) did not receive active laser irradiation. Patients were then instructed to rate their levels of pain on a visual analog scale over time, and the amount of tooth movement was analyzed. Results: Significant pain reductions were observed with laser treatment from immediately after insertion of separators through day 4, but no differences from the nonirradiated control side were noted thereafter. No significant difference was noted in the amount of tooth movement between the irradiated and nonirradiated group. Conclusions: The hypothesis was rejected. The results suggest that local CO2 laser irradiation will reduce pain associated with orthodontic force application without interfering with the tooth movement.
- CO laser
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