A periodontist is a dentist who specializes in connectivity. Periodontal literally means “around the tooth.” Therefore, a periodontist knows all about the relationship between your teeth and gums, and is highly motivated in ensuring a good relationship between the two.
Added to their dental studies, periodontists undergo three years of extensive training in soft tissue, and in the problems and diseases that can destroy it. The relationship between destructive periodontal disease and the immune system is of great interest to the periodontist.
Data shows that half of all Americans may be suffering from periodontal disease. Unfortunately, many of those people do not even know it, so part of the job of the periodontist is to educate them.
Our periodontist in Northridge will tell you that gum disease can be insidious, meaning that it is often asymptomatic. Symptoms are usually subtle, including bad breath or a bad taste, and slight bleeding when brushing and flossing. These symptoms may seem minor, but this is where periodontal disease starts. Bacteria buildup, or biofilm, occurs in the absence of hygiene. So when you neglect your brushing and flossing, or pay poor attention to diet, you are helping to erode the teeth and gums.
Periodontists work largely on referral. They handle advanced cases of gum disease and bone loss, and perform procedures like crown lengthening and tissue grafting. They also install dental implants for patients who are missing teeth due to infection or injury.
To find out more about periodontal care, talk to our Northridge dentist.