At Sherborn Family Dental, Dr. Lily Ling uses a variety of techniques and technologies to reduce patient stress when giving dental injections. We discussed one of these technologies - the single tooth anesthesia (STA) dental injection system - in our March 16, 2012 blog post. This blog post is about the DentalVibe, another technology that Dr. Ling uses for pain free injections.
How does DentalVibe Provide Pain Free Injections?
Research shows that when vibration is applied as a counter-stimulation to an anesthetic injection, it reaches the brain before the pain sensation does, blocking the patient's brain from feeling the injection.
DentalVibe uses pulse technology to close the pain gate to the brain and block the discomfort of dental injections.
The micro-sonic oscillations of DentalVibe's comfort tips are pulsed in a controlled synchronized wave pattern sending a soothing percussive stimulation deep into the oral mucosa, gently exciting the submucosal sensory nerve endings. This pulsed re-stimulation maintains a closure of the pain gate, blocking the pain of an injection.
There is a neurological "gate" located within the dorsal horn of the spinal cord that can either block pain signals or permit them to travel up the spinothalamic tract to the brain. The sensation of touch or vibration travel very quickly along thick, myelinated, A beta nerve fibers at 75 meters/second. In contrast, the sensation of pain travels slowly along thin, unmyelinated, C nerve fibers at 2 meters/second.
When occurring at the same time, the vibrational sensation reaches the sensory area of the brain first, causing a release of inhibitory interneurons, preventing the activation of projection neurons, resulting in a closure of the gate to the sensation of pain.
Benefits to the Patient
Dr. Ling uses these new technologies to improve patient comfort and reduce the stress of receiving dental injections. Depending on the type of procedure, she might use either the DentalVibe or the STA dental injection system. Either way the result for the patient is enhanced comfort during the procedure.
Dr. Lily Ling received her DMD from Tufts Dental School and completed an advanced education in general dentistry (AEGD) residency at UConn Health Center.