Health and appearance of gingiva are important parts of a smile. Gingival tissues are those that are concerned with our gums. The color of the gingiva is various among different individuals. Gingival pigmentation is perceived to be unaesthetic by patients and even makes them conscious of their smiles. Demand for depigmentation therapy is mostly seen in patients with the excessive gingival display.
The main cause of hyperpigmentation is the presence of melanin granules which are produced by melanoblasts. In a few cases with thin biotype (thickness) of the gingiva, the pigmentation is more evident than in cases with thick biotype. Pigmentation is contributed by products of the physiological process such as melanin, melanoid, carotene, oxyhemoglobin, reduced hemoglobin, bilirubin and iron and/or pathological diseases, and conditions. Furthermore, environmental risk factors such as tobacco smoking contribute to the gingival hyperpigmentation. Ethnicity and age also influence the colour of gingiva.
Amongst the various treatment modalities, Laser therapy has been proven to be quite efficacious in the treatment of gingival hyperpigmentation. When compared to traditional surgical methods, Lasers exhibit fewer post-operative complications and increased patient comfort and compliance. The use of lasers eliminates the need for a post-operative dressing. It is an effective and safe treatment modality with ‘no cut, no sew, no blood’ as its motto. A common limitation of all depigmentation procedures, recurrence of hyperpigmentation, is delayed by the use of Lasers. Meanwhile, it allows clean and dry operating field and stable results