What Does a Periodontist Do?

wonderingUnlike your general dentist, who utilizes a broad range of treatments for most common dental issues, a periodontist is an expert who specializes in the tissues and structures that support your teeth. Preventing, diagnosing, and treating issues with your periodontal tissue (gums) may be necessary to preserving your natural teeth. When advanced gum disease, or rampant oral inflammation, is present, your dentist will likely recommend you to a periodontist for specialized treatment.

What Unhealthy Gums Look Like

Gum disease begins when bacteria-rich plaque overwhelms your teeth and gums. Some of the over-600 different kinds of bacteria in your mouth are known to release toxins that cause gums separate from your teeth. Others trick your immune system to survive, which results in rampant, damaging inflammation throughout your gum tissue.  These chemicals are released into your bloodstream. Treating severe gum disease, or periodontitis, sometimes involves rebuilding gum tissue that has been irreversibly damaged by infection and inflammation.

Treating the Stages of Periodontal Disease

Regardless of how serious your gum disease is, treatment will involve removing the infectious bacteria from underneath your gums. In minor cases of gingivitis, this may require no more than a scaling and root planing. Also called a deep cleaning, the procedure involves carefully debriding your teeth’s roots underneath the gums, and smoothing the tooth surfaces to discourage future bacteria buildup. If the disease progresses, it can destroy your gums and jawbone underneath, making advanced gum disease the leading cause of adult tooth loss in the United States.

Periodontists and Dental Implant Placement

Though tooth loss is one of the most devastating results of untreated gum disease, it isn’t the end of your periodontal health. Aside from diagnosing and treating periodontal disease, Dr. Kania is highly-skilled at placing dental implants for patients who’ve lost one or more teeth. Implants are titanium root devices that are surgically inserted into your jawbone, and can support a dental crown, bridge or denture with unmatched stability. If you’ve lost one or more teeth, either to periodontal disease or for any other reason, then speak with Dr. Kania about the possibility of receiving dental implants.

About Your San Diego Periodontist:

If you suspect you might have periodontal disease, then schedule a periodontal appointment as soon as possible. As a board-certified periodontist, Dr. Ann Kania is specially qualified to diagnose and treat issues concerning periodontal tissue and the supportive structures of a patient’s smile, as well as place dental implants for patients with missing teeth. To seek Dr. Kania’s help and expertise, visit our office or contact us today at (760) 642-0711.