What exactly is a periodontist?

You’ve consulted your dentist about a persistent tooth issue, and they’ve recommended seeing a periodontist. If you’re unsure about this suggestion, you might be feeling a bit uneasy. So, what exactly is a periodontist, and should you visit one?

What is a periodontist?

A periodontist specializes in preventing and treating gum disease and placing dental implants. Gum disease, or periodontal disease, causes chronic inflammation of the gums, affecting teeth and their supporting bones.

A periodontist completes extensive training, including three additional years after dental school. They handle periodontal disease, dental implants, and related procedures like scaling and root planing, and oral inflammation treatment.

Signs that you might need a periodontist

Your regular dentist usually refers you to a periodontist. Signs indicating a need for a periodontist include:

What to expect during your visit

Periodontist conduct detailed examinations of teeth, gums, and bone structure, considering medical history and conditions like diabetes or heart disease. Treatment plans vary from reshaping gums to dental implants, tailored to individual needs. During the checkup, they’ll look at your gums to see if they’re receding and check if any of your teeth feel loose. They’ll also see how your teeth come together when you bite and measure the spaces between them using a periodontal probe. Additionally, might take some X-rays too, just to get a clearer picture.


After the initial exams and medical checks, your periodontist will suggest a treatment plan. 

Prevention is key!

Preventive measures like:

  • Regular brushing,
  • Flossing
  • Dental checkups
  • Avoiding smoking
  • Avoiding sugary snacks can help.

Despite preventive efforts, periodic visits to a periodontist may still be necessary.

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