What is a Periodontist?
A periodontist is a dentist with an additional three years of education who specializes in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of periodontal disease, and in the placement of dental implants. Periodontists also treat oral inflammation.
Periodontists often treat more problematic periodontal cases, such as those with severe gum disease or a complex medical history. Periodontists offer a wide range of treatments, such as scaling and root planing (in which the infected surface of the root is cleaned) or root surface debridement (in which damaged tissue is removed). They can also treat patients with severe gum problems using a range of surgical procedures. In addition, periodontists are specially trained in the placement, maintenance, and repair of dental implants.
Who Should see a Periodontist
Some periodontal needs can be managed by the general dentist. However, patients who present with moderate or severe levels of periodontal disease, patients with more complex cases or patients wanting dental implants, will be best managed by a partnership between the dentist and periodontist. Patients are typically referred to a periodontist by the general dentist.