A Periodontist is a dentist who specializes in periodontal disease. This includes the soft tissues of the mouth and areas that support teeth. These tissues are the gums, the bone and the periodontal ligaments.
When these tissues suffer deterioration due to gum disease, poor hygiene, or simply as we age, teeth lose their support and can become loose.
Periodontal disease is caused by bacterial infections. The bacteria travels through the bloodstream and can cause other health issues, too. For this reason, any dental infection, abscess, or notable gum problem should be treated immediately.
Here, we can see gum recession in the molar and how the it has recovered after treatment.
Symptoms of periodontal disease:
- Red gums, even purplish sometimes
- Receding gums, or pockets in the gums
- Swollen gums
- Bleeding from the gums when brushing or even for no apparent reason
- Halitosis (bad breath)
- Tooth mobility
- History of these pathologies in the family
- Gingivitis is characterised by a deep reddish colour of the gums, inflammation and bleeding. This is normally associated with poor oral hygiene. However, it can also be due to some medications or it can appear during pregnancy. Consecuently, if gingivitis is not treated quickly it can progress into periodontitis.
- Periodontitis is characterised by the presence of tartar build-up in the gums, excessive bleeding and the appearance of periodontal ‘pockets’ where bacteria accumulates. Likewise, and over time, it will also produce the reabsorption of the bone and other supporting tissues. This eventually leads to loose teeth and their subsequent loss.
Firstly, here is some advice on how to avoid major problems with your gums and teeth.
- Brush your teeth twice a day. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to gently brush around each tooth.
- Floss your teeth once or twice a day. Plaque loves to hide in between teeth where toothbrush bristles can’t reach. This is why flossing is important.
- Use a fluoride mouth rinse.
- Don’t skip dental appointments!
- Avoid sugary foods and beverages.
Dr Juan Francisco Gomez and his friendly team are ready to help you.
What a Periodontist Does
If periodontal disease is caught early and hasn’t damaged the structures below the gum line, a professional cleaning should do. Hoever, if the pockets between your gums and teeth are too deep, then scaling and root planing may be needed.
This is a deep cleaning where the dentist removes all the plaque and tartar (hardened plaque) above and below the gumline. The periodontist makes sure to clean all the way down to the bottom of the pockets which have formed.
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