When it comes to the science of good hygiene, we all know how important taking care of our teeth and gums are-though for many of us, either genetics, absent-mindedness, costs, and/or insurance coverage can keep us from maintaining the overall health of our mouths-through proper brushing, flossing, and checkups with the dentist. Unfortunately, this can lead many of us to need more advanced care in the form of a periodontist. Though many of us have never even heard of this term, it is a vital profession in the science of teeth and gum care.
So, what is a periodontist? A periodontist is a specialty dentist who can detect, diagnose, and treat gum disease and is able to administer advanced care to patients who may want or need the optimum dental health. A periodontist must complete four years of dental school, and then also three years in their advanced specialty. From there, periodontists are able to offer their patients advanced dental care in the following areas: gum disease and dental implantation.
Periodontists are really defined by what periodontist procedures they can offer a patient- such as in gum disease treatments. Often, a patient who is having symptoms of gum disease has acquired these symptoms due to improper care of their teeth. While many patients need only a standard dentist for care, in many cases, it is recommended that they use a periodontist. This is because a periodontist can detect, diagnose, and treat gum disease with more accuracy than a dentist. This is why in the event of patient gum disease or dental implant needs, a dentist will often recommend a periodontist.
Periodontal (gum) diseases, including gingivitis and periodontitis, are serious infections that left untreated, lead to tooth loss. Periodontal disease is a chronic bacterial infection that affects the gums and bone supporting the teeth.
Periodontal disease can affect one tooth or many teeth. It begins when the bacteria in plaque (the sticky, colorless film that constantly forms on your teeth) causes the gums to become inflamed. The following factors also affect the health of your gums.
So, more specifically, what do periodontists do as regards periodontist procedures? For gum disease treatments, the care is typically administered in phases. The periodontist evaluates the extent of the damage to the gums and begins educating the patient on proper brushing, flossing, and plaque removal techniques. Plaque is removed and gum bleeding reduced.
In proper gum treatment procedures, the second phase administered by a periodontist is closer inspection of the areas which have harbored plaque and caused gum disease. Depending on the extent of the remaining damage, and the willingness of the patient to begin proper dental hygiene, the treatment typically reduces the size of these pockets.