Prosthodontists, orthodontists, endodontists—there are many areas of specialization within dentistry, and it can be hard for patients to know which dentist does what. In this article, you’ll learn what a periodontist specializes in.
We are most familiar with our family dentist who provides us with oral exams, takes x-rays, and fills cavities. Many of us have been under the care of orthodontists who help us correct misaligned teeth. If you’ve ever had a root canal, then that procedure was performed by an endodontist. A prosthodontist specializes in dental implants and prosthetic teeth and a periodontist specializes in treating periodontitis or gum disease.
These are just a few of the ten areas of specialization recognized by the American Dental Association. Don’t worry, there won’t be a quiz on this stuff, but what follows is some more information on periodontics and what dental services periodontists provide to their patients.
What Does a Periodontist Do?
According to the American Academy of Periodontology, a periodontist is a dentist who specializes in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of periodontal disease, and in dental implants placement. They are also experts in treating oral inflammation.
What Training & Education Do Periodontists Get?
Dentists receive four years of education and training from dental schools. They earn either a Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) or a Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD) degree. A periodontist completes three additional years of graduate level study at a school accredited by the American Dental Association.
How Do Periodontists Treat Gum Disease?
Periodontal, or gum disease, is often caused by a lack of good oral hygiene. The mild form of gum disease is called gingivitis. It is most commonly caused by bacteria that builds up on teeth in the form of plaque, although non-plaque induced gingival lesions can be caused by allergies or due to genetics. Cavities and the loss of one or more teeth can result if gingivitis goes untreated.
Symptoms of gingivitis include:
- Red or purple gums
- Soft, tender, bleeding gums
- Swollen or receding gums.
In periodontics, gum disease is treated with root planing, which cleans the surface of the root, as well as scaling, which removes plaque from below the gumline. Proper brushing, flossing, and regular dental visits are necessary to prevent the return of gingivitis.
Periodontitis is a more severe form of gum disease that develops when gingivitis is left untreated. It can also be caused by other factors such as:
- Certain medications
In addition to sore, red, and swollen gums, bleeding gums and painful chewing, periodontitis can cause loose teeth, receding gums, and persistent bad breath.
Learn More: Periodontitis: Symptoms and Treatment
Do Periodontists Do Dental Implants?
Yes! Periodontists provide treatment depending on the severity of periodontitis and the removal of one or more teeth may be required. In this event, periodontists assist their patients with dental implant options. Dental implants are comprised of small titanium rods that are surgically placed in the jawbone. An abutment is placed on top and an artificial crown is placed on top of this connector. Dental implants restore the full functioning of the mouth, including biting, chewing, and, of course, smiling.
Schedule a Free Consultation with a Periodontist Today
To ensure great gum health and to get treatment for periodontal disease, call EON Clinics Dental Implants today. We provide single and multiple tooth to full jaw All-on-4 dental implants to help patients enjoy eating and smiling again. Find out how dental implants can improve your life. Schedule a free consultation online today or call us at 844-365-7645.