What is a Periodontist?

A periodontist is a dentist who specializes in studying the gums, supporting structures of the teeth, and the different diseases and conditions that affect them. At Rivercrest Family Dental, our periodontists focus on preventing, diagnosing, and treating periodontal disease. They also place dental implants and treat oral inflammation. In addition to dental school, periodontists train three extra years, focusing on these areas, so that they are up to date with the latest techniques to treat periodontal disease and address any cosmetic issues.

What Do Periodontists Do?

With deep cleanings and other procedures, periodontists can restore the beauty and health of infected or inflamed gums. Periodontists provide a wide-range of treatments, including root surface debridement, scaling and root planing. Root surface debridement involves removed the damaged tissue, while scale and root planing clean the infected surface of the roof.

In more severe cases, periodontists can also help patients with gum problems through a range of surgical procedures. Additionally, periodontists are specially trained in the placement, maintenance, and repair of dental implants.

The Benefits of Seeing a Periodontist

Though a general dentist is an ideal choice for routine dental care and work, certain patients require extra care. Those especially who suffer from constant or severe gum issues and disease should visit a periodontist. Let’s take a look at the different ways that periodontics can help you and why you might consider visiting a periodontist the next time you have issues with the surrounding structures of your teeth.

Periodontists Specialize in Gum Care

While brushing, flossing, and routine dental cleanings are important for maintaining your oral well, these efforts aren’t always enough. When gum disease infections start in your mouth, they can reach into deep pockets between your teeth and gums. This infection can become inflamed, swollen, painful, and ultimately lead to gum disease.

A periodontist can provide deep cleanings in the form of scaling and root planing. This procedure is done in two or more stages, deeply cleans the teeth beneath the gum line, and may require a local anesthetic. Scaling involves removing all of the plaque and tartar both above and below the gum so that it’s smooth all the way down to the deeper pockets. Root planing smooths the roots of your teeth so that your gums reattach. Scaling and root planing is used to prevent and treat gum disease. It can prevent tooth, bone, and gum loss, which can save you future trips to the dentist.

A Periodontist Can Help Prevent Tooth and Gum Loss

For serious cases where infection has spread below the gum line, a periodontist can address the irreparable damage to the tissues and surrounding gum pocket. This treatment is called root surface debridement. Though scaling and root planing clean the surface of the tooth, root surface debridement is a deeper clean. It’s more invasive in that it actually remove damaged tissue, which prevents infection from spreading to the rest of the mouth and promotes healing. If a patient is treated with root surface debridement early on, it can also prevent the infection from invading the inside roots of the tooth and the need for a root canal.

A Periodontist Can Replace Broken or Missing Teeth

Some patients might have broken or missing teeth that need to be replaced with dental implants. For those who have suffered from the loss of one or more teeth from infection, disease, or trauma, a periodontist can help you. Their deep structural understanding of the teeth, gums, and jaw, allows them to create a patient care plan, including a dental implant surgery. By working with your regular dentist, a periodontist can select the crown or denture and fit it for your new dental implant.

Keep Your Gums Healthy at Home

Good dental care is an essential part of keeping your mouth healthy and gum disease-free. By taking simple steps you can prevent periodontitis. These steps include brushing your teeth, flossing daily, rinsing your mouth with antiseptic wash, and of course, visiting your dentist regularly, While dentists are a great source to use when caring for your teeth, sometimes patients need more extensive help. Through their extensive training, periodontists can keep your gums and surrounding structures healthy, which ultimately promotes stronger teeth and oral wellness.

At Rivercrest Family Dental, we strongly recommend having your teeth professionally cleaned at least twice a year to prevent any issues such as gum infection and disease. If you’d like to learn more about periodontics and how it can help you, contact us today!