In dentistry, there are a variety of different professions that maintain the look and health of teeth. While dentists focus on the entire mouth, periodontists are trained in gum health and treating advanced stages of gum disease. Gum disease can occur in anyone and can range from mild to severe. If gum disease isn’t remedied quickly, it can lead to tooth loss, gum recession and holes in the gum tissue. Find out how periodontists protect gum health and what to expect during a periodontal appointment with this guide!
Dental Careers and Specialties
The dental industry is made up of a variety of specialties that focus on different areas of the mouth and parts of the oral cavity. While general dentists can place crowns, treat bite disorders and perform a number of cosmetic procedures, they simply can’t do everything. That’s why there are so many different sublevels to dentistry so that patients can receive the appropriate treatment that they need for their specific situation. For example, endodontists are specialists that treat the inside of teeth and maintain the nerves and pulp found within them. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons focus on neck, head and jaw injuries and diseases while radiologists in the same sublevel review facial structures on CT and MRI scans to diagnose abnormalities. Prosthodontists, on the other hand, use dental material to construct oral devices to treat teeth that have been damaged by disease. Orthodontists specialize in treating irregular tooth development and use a range of materials from braces to retainers to align teeth. Even dental public health professionals are considered a part of the dental industry as they influence what types of policies and reforms are created within the industry. All of these professions, and many more, make up the dental industry as a whole and help patients receive the care that they need.
What Is A Periodontist?
One of the most common professions within dentistry is periodontics, and the medical professional who performs this type of treatment is called a periodontist. A periodontist treats the tissue around the teeth, specifically the gums, and attends to gum disease. They examine the gums for signs of decay, evaluate how the teeth come together to identify bite issues and offer scaling and root planing treatments to clean infected teeth. A periodontist also specializes in placing and repairing dental implants. While a periodontist does all of these things and more, their main focus is on treating periodontal disease to prevent tooth loss and infection. A periodontist usually becomes involved whenever oral hygiene has lacked to the point that gum disease has occurred. Gum disease causes receding gum lines that create long teeth, deteriorates the tooth structure and eventual tooth loss. This condition can be mild (gingivitis), moderate (periodintitis) or severe (periodontitis), but each case is treatable by a periodontist. In certain cases, a periodontist will take X-rays to evaluate the health of the bones below the gums. Most patients will only visit with a periodontist if they are exhibiting signs of periodontal disease that need to be reviewed by a specialist. If your oral health needs require you to visit with a periodontist, your dentist will most likely collaborate with him/her to give you the best care possible.
Keeping Your Mouth Happy and Healthy
As mentioned, periodontists treat gum disease that range from mild to severe. However, it’s better that you keep your oral health in check so that gum disease doesn’t develop in the first place. The most important thing that you can do to prevent this from developing is committing to a regular oral hygiene routine that includes brushing and flossing your teeth daily. Daily dental care, along with regular dental checkups, will ensure that your gums and teeth stay healthy for years to come. Meeting with your dentist for your semi-annual checkups are especially important if you’ve had gum disease in the past. These visits will allow the dentist to review your gums and teeth and ensure that everything looks good. He/she will provide a deep cleaning to remove excess plaque, which contributes to gum disease, and check the areas around your teeth for signs of inflammation. Kids and teenagers are also at-risk for gum disease so it’s important that they stay up-to-date with their dental checkups, as well, to monitor their gum health.
Prevent Gum Disease With Our Help!
If you’re suffering from gum disease and need treatment, call Dr. Evanson at (720) 409-0008 to schedule a periodontal evaluation. Our team is experienced with treating gum disease and can help you and your family receive the proper care that you deserve. Call today to get your oral health back on track!