ALD Member Spotlight: Dr. Debra Occena Sablada

Dr. Debra Occena Sablada, Davao City, Philippines

I am an oral surgeon with a hospital-based practice, AND a certified peer lactation counsellor. I’ve been doing tongue and lip tie releases, among other procedures, for the past 20 years. Being based in a Third World country definitely poses challenges in terms of investing in lasers, being trained, and offering procedures as a viable option to my patients. However, I decided to go with the BEST treatment option for my patients, and not to worry about recouping investments and remunerations, and got my first laser, a 10W Diode Laser, in 2020.


I was extremely impressed with so many aspects of using the laser for my procedures, especially for Lip and Tongue Tie releases. In the “olden days”, we would have to sedate the older babies because it was quite tedious to anesthetize, clamp, cut, and suture. The COVID pandemic somehow spurred my decision to invest in the diode because of the difficulty of going thru hospitalization for sedation. Families felt “safer” that the procedure be done in the clinic ONLY with no need for long downtime in the recovery room or no exposure to the hospital operating rooms!

After I started using the diode, we only used minimal topical anesthetic, and we were able to evaluate latch IMMEDIATELY. For other procedures such as gingivectomies or implant exposure, it was very gratifying to hear about MINIMAL post operative discomfort and note enhanced healing.


In November 2021, I took another “Leap of Faith” and got a CO2 laser primarily for my lip and tongue tie releases. I was blown away by the speed of the procedure, the ease of the technique and the beautiful healing .


My patients and referring doctors are particularly pleased at the positive treatment outcomes, the speed of the procedures and the post-operative comfort they experience! I am extremely grateful to the Academy of Laser Dentistry for the opportunity to learn from where I am, and that their education formats meet my needs, from webinars to chances to learn at my own pace! I look forward to the face-to-face learning when COVID 19 becomes less of a concern, but will always be appreciative of how ALD has enhanced the quality of service I get to offer my patients thru the knowledge that the Academy has shared!


Dr. Debra Occena Sablada Dr. Debra Occena Sablada Dr. Debra Occena Sablada


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