With the availability of many fields of dentistry focusing on specific dental conditions, it can be quite hard to understand each of them. Periodontology or periodontist is one such speciality of dentistry that many have doubts about and why or when you need them. This article will give a simple guide on all you need to know about periodontists.
What Is it?
A periodontist is a dentist who specializes in diagnosing, preventing, and treating periodontal diseases and the placement of dental implants. Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects the gums and bones supporting the teeth.
In some cases, a general dentist can treat less periodontal severe conditions. But if the condition is more challenging, your dentist will refer you to a periodontist. Similarly, while a general dentist may be able to perform your dental implant procedure.; some will refer you to a periodontist for more challenging implant cases.
Periodontists receive extensive training in these dental areas, including three additional years of education beyond dental school. Periodontists also provide specialised services like scaling, root planing, root surface debridement, oral inflammation treatment, and cosmetic periodontal procedures.
Here are six common reasons why you may have to see a periodontist
Bleeding Gums when Brushing or Flossing
If you experience bleeding when flossing, it may indicate a sign of early-stage gingivitis (gum disease). On the other hand, if you start bleeding from your gums after brushing or get unexplained bleeding after eating, it may indicate more advanced periodontitis requiring a periodontist.
Red, Swollen, Tender Gums
The bacteria that causes gingivitis can also cause inflammation. If these inflamed gums are not treated, they can lead to deep pockets around the teeth, eventually leading to tooth loss. In addition, inflamed gums are redder in appearance and tender in touch. If you’re experiencing swollen gums with pain or bleeding tender gums, call a periodontist.
Chronic Bad Breath (Halitosis)
It’s common not to think of bad breath as a warning sign of disease. But if you experience chronic bad breath that doesn’t go away no matter how consistent oral care you follow, it could be a sign of periodontal infection.
Hot And Cold Sensitive Teeth
Advanced gum diseases can cause increased tooth sensitivity due to receding gum lines and exposed roots. Sensitivity in the teeth can also indicate an eroding enamel. In short, if your teeth get too sensitive to hot or cold food and beverages, seek periodontist care to treat or halt this sensitivity progression.
Loose Teeth (In Adults)
Once you have lost your baby teeth, the rest of the teeth should last forever. However, periodontitis can deepen pockets around the teeth, making them loose. This may cause a shift in the teeth alongside troubles in chewing and a change in how your teeth fit together, or you may notice new spaces between the teeth. Loose teeth may also indicate a warning sign of bone loss, so seeking early periodontist attention is necessary.
If you feel your teeth are looking longer than others, it could mean that your gums are receding. Gum recession is a symptom of advanced periodontal disease and, if left untreated, can have severe side effects. In addition, loss of gum tissue around the teeth can lead to exposed roots or result in tooth loss.