Introduction: Xerostomia is a subjective complaint of mouth/oral dryness, caused by a reduction in normal salivary secretion due to different causes. Even though there are many available treatment modalities to enhance salivary flow, the therapy often remains unsatisfactory. The low-level laser therapy (low-level laser irradiation, photo-biomodulation) has been extensively used as a new, non-invasive approach and advantageous tool for reduction of xerostomia. Therefore, the aim of this study is to give a systematic overview on the effects of low-level laser therapy on xerostomia.
Material and methods: A systematic review of published articles in PubMed database was carried out using keywords: "low-level laser therapy", "xerostomia", "mouth dryness".
Results: In all published articles, which were considered adequate for this overview, positive effects of low-level laser therapy were reported. Low-level laser therapy could significantly enhance salivary secretion and improve antimicrobial characteristics of secreted saliva (increased level of secretory immunoglobulin A; sIgA). Furthermore, low-level laser therapy could improve salivary flow and regeneration of salivary duct epithelial cells.
Conclusion: The current literature suggests that low-level laser therapy can be safely and effectively used as an advanced treatment modality for reduction of xerostomia. Further in vivo, in vitro and clinical studies using different irradiation parameters are suggested to determine the best laser parameters to be used.