If you're still experiencing all this, then I'd say 'Yes' your laser is probably going bad on you and is essentially dying a slow death. If you still have your system under warranty, call Sony--if not, then you've got 2 options 1) if you're technically inclined, you can take on the task of replacing you laser yourself or 2) you can google about (or even get on ebay) and see if there is a place, locally (or on the web) that can perform the replacement for you. That's the best advice I can give ya.
Why don't you try updating the firmware then. Make sure your ethernet cable is attached to your PS3 and go into SETTINGS > SYSTEM UPDATE > Press X >Select UPDATE VIA INTERNET >Press X. If your issue is a known issue, Sony usually issues a patch via system update to fix it.
is it playing blu-rays? if not, this means your laser has crapped out on you. it happened to me, and i managed to fix it myself. i opened my system up and replaced the laser, and boom, my system was playing blu-rays and all games again. there are plenty of videos online that will show you how to replace the laser. i hope this helps.