Introducing the Periodontist
When you go in for your regular dental checkup, you’re likely spending that time with a hygienist and your dental practitioner, a general dentist. If you’ve never had to see a specialist you may not know that there are numerous types of dentist each specializing in a certain form of dental care. One of those specialists is known as a periodontist, and they’re experts in all the structures that make up the support system for your teeth. From your jawbone and gums to your temporomandibular joint (that’s a mouthful, call it the TMJ) these specialists make sure your teeth have a firm footing in health support structures.
Why Would I Need To See A Periodontist?
A referral to a periodontist often comes on the heels of periodontal disease that has gone improperly treated or isn’t responding to normal treatment. Medical histories and other complications can also make it necessary to see a periodontist for something typically treated by your general dentist. Conditions like diabetes, cancer, and HIV can lead to greater health concerns and periodontitis that doesn’t respond to normal treatment.
What Does A Periodontist Do?
A periodontist’s trade includes the maintenance, placement, and creation of certain dental prosthetics. If it’s been determined that you can benefit from bridges, implants, dentures, or another form of prosthetic used to replace teeth then it’s off to a periodontist you may go. While many of the above can be handled by a general dentist, complex cases may require the specialized training of these experts. Periodontists are also called in when a deep cleaning is required, including planing of the roots, which may involve removal of tissue from the root, known as debriding, to tackle the concern.
How Do I Know If I Need To See A Periodontist?
The call to see a periodontist will probably come from your general dentist, though concerns from medical conditions may mean you want to seek out a consultation with one on your own. If you think that implants may be in your future, it’s also a good time to pick up the phone and speak to one of these specialists.
Will I Have To Go Out Of Office to See A Periodontist?
This depends entirely on the dental office you work out of. Many dental offices have specialists on staff for situations like these, and in rare cases, your general dentist may actually be a periodontist themselves. It is not unheard of for specialists to also function as a general dentist.
If you’ve discovered that a visit to a periodontist may be necessary in your future, pick up the phone and call Dr. Deborah Tabb at Bethesda Family Dentistry for an appointment. The experts at their office Bethesda, RI have been helping patients like you maintain optimal oral health through excellent preventive care and education. During your appointment, your dentist will be able to provide consultation on whether a periodontist will be appropriate for your case.