2012-06-20 / Features

When Should You See A Periodontist?

Many people are at risk of developing gum disease due to poor oral hygiene and may need to see a periodontist for further evaluation and treatment. Dentists in New York City are capable of, and routinely treat, mild forms of gum disease. If, however, the gum disease progresses to a more complicated stage, dentists may refer their patients to specialists for more in depth assessments. A periodontist is a dentist who specializes in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of periodontal disease (gum disease) such as gingivitis and periodontitis. Services a periodontist in New York City may offer include: deep gum cleaning and other root therapies; tooth extraction; placement of implants (artificial teeth); cosmetic procedures; and surgery to the jaw bones.

Proper oral hygiene is critical to healthy gums and preventing periodontal disease. When you do not brush your teeth and floss at least twice a day, you allow plaque to build up on your teeth. Plaque turns into tartar over time, and can lead to infection and inflammation of the gums called gingivitis. Although gingivitis is considered mild and manageable, if left untreated, the effects may become permanent and significant. Signs of gingivitis include bleeding gums while flossing or brushing, or swelling and soreness of gums. If you are experiencing any of these conditions, you should discuss this with your dentist as soon as possible to determine whether you need to see a periodontist for further evaluation.

Fortunately, when gum disease is caught and treated in the early stages, permanent and severe damage to your teeth and gums can be avoided. Consistent cleanings performed by a qualified dental hygienist, as well as daily brushing and flossing, have been proven to be effective in reversing and preventing further incidences of gingivitis. Therefore, prompt action is the key to a healthy outcome.

People that choose not to seek prompt dental care from either a dentist or a periodontist when experiencing symptoms of gum disease will likely develop periodontitis. Periodontitis is considered severe and serious gum disease that may cause permanent damage to your teeth, gums, and bones. When plaque continues to build up on your teeth for a prolonged period of time, it hardens and turns into calculus. Calculus is very dangerous because it causes decay of the tissues and bones that hold your teeth in place. As your tissue and bones disintegrate, your gums recede and your teeth can fall out. The end result may require very costly and painful cosmetic reconstructive procedures involving bone reconstruction and permanent dental implants.

Proper and consistent oral hygiene at home through flossing and brushing your teeth, coupled with routine dental cleanings, not only can reverse the effects of gingivitis, it can also prevent periodontitis. A quick visit to your dentist or periodontist can help you avoid unnecessary pain and permanent damage to your teeth. It’s important that everyone remember that gum disease can be prevented!

For more information about gum disease and when you may need to see a periodontist, contact Park Dental Care today at 718-Dentist. Queens residents, as well as those located throughout metropolitan New York City, will find that we are conveniently located near the N and Q subway lines at the Astoria-Ditmars Boulevard station. Let us show you how routine dental cleanings and proper oral hygiene can help you prevent gum disease and maintain great oral health!

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