What is a Periodontist?
A periodontist is a dentist who specialises in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of periodontal disease, functional and aesthetic gum surgery and in the placement of dental implants. Periodontists are also experts in the treatment of oral inflammation.
Periodontists receive extensive training in these areas, including three additional years of education beyond dental school. They are familiar with the latest techniques for diagnosing and treating periodontal disease and are also trained in performing cosmetic periodontal procedures.
Coastal Periodontics provide the following services
- Treatment of Periodontal ‘gum’ disease.
- Placement of dental implants.
- Exposure of impacted teeth/ frenectomies etc.
- Functional and Cosmetic ‘gum’ surgery.
- Surgical extraction of teeth.
Periodontists often treat more problematic periodontal cases, such as those with severe gum disease or those with a complex medical history. Periodontists offer a wide range of treatments, such as scaling and root debridement (in which the bacterial debris is removed from the root surface). They treat patients with severe gum problems using a range of surgical procedures. In addition, periodontists are specially trained in the placement of dental implants and treatment of infections affecting the dental implants.
The periodontist usually reviews the patient’s complete medical and dental histories to determine what may affect the gum disease. It is extremely important for the periodontist to know if any medications are being taken or if the patient is being treated for any condition that can affect periodontal care including surgery, such as heart disease, hip replacements, blood thinning medications, diabetes, or pregnancy.
The periodontist examines the gums, checks to see if there is any gum line recession, assesses how the teeth fit together when biting, and checks the teeth to see if any are loose. The periodontist will also take a small measuring instrument called a probe and place it between the teeth and gums to determine the depth of those spaces, known as periodontal pockets. Radiographs (X-rays) may also be taken to observe the level of the bone around the teeth. This information helps the periodontist assess the health of the gums and what treatment will be best for you.
Who Should See a Periodontist?
Some patients’ periodontal needs can be managed by the general dentist. However, as more patients are exhibiting signs of periodontal disease, coupled with research that suggests a relationship between periodontal disease and other chronic diseases of ageing, an increased level of expertise and understanding supplied by a trained specialist will be better. Patients who present with moderate or severe levels of periodontal disease, or patients with more complex cases, will be best managed by a partnership between the dentist and periodontist.