Background: This study aimed to evaluate the effect of 810-nm diode laser on reducing dentinal hypersensitivity (DH).
Material and Methods: Five human molar teeth without any decay were used in the preclinical study. Each tooth was horizontally sectioned into two dentin blocks which were irradiated by the 810-nm diode laser and then analyzed by a scanning electron microscope (SEM) before and after irradiation. In the clinical investigation, thirteen patients with a total of 45 teeth with DH were included. Each participant received diode laser irradiation and fluoride varnish application on the offending teeth in different quadrants. Visual analogue scale (VAS) was used to assess the extent of DH at the baseline and 15 minutes, 1 day, 7 days, 14 days, 1 month, 2 months, and 3 months after the desensitizing treatment.
Results: The preclinical study showed both the diameter and the surface area of the dentinal tubules were significantly reduced after diode laser irradiation (p<0.01 and p<0.05, respectively). Clinically, mean VAS scores decreased after desensitizing treatment in both diode laser group and fluoride varnish groups. Compared with the baseline data, VAS did not significantly decrease in the fluoride varnish group but consistently and significantly decreased in the diode laser group over 3 months. The reduction of VAS was significantly greater in the diode laser group than in the fluoride varnish group at days 7 and 14 (both p-values < 0.05).
Conclusion: The 810-nm diode laser is capable of narrowing the diameter of dentinal tubule and has clinical effectiveness on reducing DH over 3 months.