The use of laser-based technologies in dentistry: Ethical issues and safety considerations
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The use of laser-based technologies in general dental practice in South Africa is growing each year both in numbers and in scope of use. It has been shown to be beneficial in treating a wide range of oral and dental conditions as well as being used as a therapeutic tool in tissue management. They have been used in the practice of dentistry for over thirty years and recently there have been numerous advertisements in the dental press regarding the advantages of owning and using lasers and how it can be a good marketing tool for a dental practice. In the United States patients seek out practices utilising laser technology and nearly two thirds of patients surveyed thought that dentists should own a laser. How can practitioners ensure that they are using laser treatment for their patients in a responsible and ethical manner?