A Superior Periodontist
A dental specialist is a dentist who has completed additional years of schooling and hands-on training to specialize in a certain field. There are nine specialties recognized by the American Dental Association, and periodontics is one of them. A periodontist in Montgomeryville is an expert in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of gum disease, the placement of dental implants, and cosmetic periodontal procedures. Keep reading to find out why visiting an expert is worth it.
What Does a Periodontist Do?
Periodontists have gone to school for three additional years beyond dental school, and as such they are experts in everything that has to do with your gum health. They can treat and diagnose oral inflammation with periodontal therapy, like scaling and root planing or pocket reduction. Prompt treatment of gum disease benefits patients’ overall health, as the condition has been linked to heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
A periodontist is also specially qualified in the placement of dental implants. While more and more dental practices are adding implant dentistry to their list of services, visiting a highly trained expert like a periodontist can result in more successful outcomes. Dental implants are a comprehensive solution to tooth loss that replaces the missing tooth’s crown as well as its root. The procedure is completed in two phases: placement and restoration. The surgical implantation requires extreme precision -- and a periodontist is an expert in the placement of dental implants.
Cosmetic periodontal procedures, like gum grafting or removal of excess tissue, also fall under the domain of a periodontist. Basically anything that has to do with the gum tissue -- especially for more difficult cases, like patients who have complicated health histories or situations -- is best treated by a periodontist. A general dentist and periodontist often work together to provide the most informed, personalized care.
Healthy Gums = Better Overall Health
Visiting a periodontist for gum maintenance can help you enjoy better overall health. Gum disease is a chronic inflammatory disease that is known to cause inflammation in other areas of the body. People who have gum disease are at a higher risk of having a number of health problems, like heart disease, stroke, diabetes, memory loss, pregnancy complications, and even certain types of cancer.
If you are at a higher risk of gum disease, you may need to visit a periodontist to help prevent the condition from developing or provide treatment for chronic areas of gum disease. The risk factors of gum disease include:
- Older age
- Smoking/tobacco use
- Medications causing dry mouth
Periodontal Therapy FAQ
Gum disease is known as the “silent killer” largely because it can develop when you don’t even realize it. Thankfully, you’re never forced to deal with it alone. The team at Dental Innovations is here to not only provide you with dedicated treatment, but answer any and all of your questions so you can be informed. Below, we’ve included a few of the most common questions we hear as well as our detailed answers, so feel free to give them a look ahead of your next appointment!
Is periodontal (gum) disease common?
Gum disease is actually one of the most common chronic conditions not just in the United States, but in the world! In fact, the CDC reports that just over 47% of adults 30 years of age and older have some form of periodontal disease. Keep in mind that includes gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease that can still be reversed with improved at-home oral care. Of course, just because gum disease is common does not mean you should skip necessary treatment.
Will gum disease get better on its own?
Unfortunately, most gum disease will only worsen the longer you go without treatment. Gum disease is technically an infection, which is not something that goes away on its own in other areas of the body, so there’s no reason it would do so just because one has developed in your gum tissue. Without professional intervention, it will break down the bone tissue holding your teeth in place as well, dramatically increasing your risk for tooth loss.
Does periodontal therapy hurt?
Ahead of your gum therapy, our in-house periodontist will provide local anesthetic to remove any sensations that could be felt during treatment. This ensures that procedures like scaling and root planing will be as comfortable as possible. Any soreness that is experienced following treatment can be managed with over-the-counter medications, such as ibuprofen.
How do I lower my risk for periodontal disease?
Whether you don’t currently have gum disease or you’re recovering and want to make sure your gums do not become reinfected, there are many ways to lower your risk for the infection moving forward. For example, you should:
- Brush twice a day using a fluoridated toothpaste
- Floss at least once a day
- Maintain routine checkups and cleanings with our office every six months
- Avoid tobacco products at all costs (as they are one of the leading causes of gum disease)
- Maintain a healthy diet low in sugar
- Consider adding a mouthwash to your routine to be extra thorough
Is gum disease curable?
In the early stages, gum disease can be reversed. This stage, known as gingivitis, can be cured by visiting our office for a dedicated cleaning and improving your at-home oral care. However, if the gum tissue becomes infected, it can only be managed with scaling and root planing as well as future follow-up deep cleanings by our periodontist. This is just another incentive to protect your oral health at all costs.
Questions? Talk to Us Today!
Having good oral health is one of the best ways to promote better general well-being. If you are in need of an expert periodontist, we invite you to schedule an appointment at Dental Innovations today!