Custom-Made Trays For More Effective, Non-Surgical Treatment

Posted on Sep 15, 2017 by William J. Claiborne, DDS MS

As a dental specialist, my goal is to provide each patient with appropriate treatment through the most effective, yet conservative, means possible.

My philosophy has always been to “never over-treat or under-treat.” This applies to patients who require surgical procedures as well as those who can achieve oral wellness via non-surgical means.

Even though non-surgical periodontal treatment has its limitations, it can be made more effective by incorporating up-to-date techniques. Using these techniques, I can often restore the patient to periodontal wellness without the need for surgical measures.

One such technique is through the use of a Custom Tray Delivery System. I begin by creating a custom-fitted tray by taking impressions of the patient’s mouth. This gives the patient’s unique oral contours that are used to form a ‘tray’ that fits over the teeth and gums. This is similar to a mouth guard (but far less bulky).

After filling with prescribed medications, patients are able to use these trays at home. The trays keep the medicine in direct contact with the areas in need of treatment.

Although tray delivery systems are approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), they have not been verified as an effective way to treat gum disease. We evaluate each patient’s condition to determine the appropriate treatment and if surgical or non-surgical means are needed. Thus, Tray Delivery Systems may not be helpful when it comes to overcoming certain levels of gum infection.

However, one condition we’ve found responds positively to Tray Delivery is in the treatment of erosive lichen planus. This is a chronic inflammatory condition inside your mouth. Lichen planus may appear as white and lacy patches, red and swollen tissues, or open sores and can cause burning sensations or pain.

Lichen planus isn’t contagious (through things such as kissing or sharing food and beverages). However, it is an autoimmune disorder and the result of the immune system attacking cells of the oral mucous membranes for unknown reasons. People with lichen planus are cautioned to have their condition monitored on a regular basis due to a higher risk for oral cancer.

In addition to regular monitoring, delivering medications through Tray Delivery Systems provides a dependable means of treatment that is non-surgical.

If you have questions about Tray Delivery Systems or any treatment, including the placement of dental implants, call 828-274-9440. We will be happy to arrange a consultation appointment to discuss various treatment options based upon your individual needs and goals.


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