periodontics
Closeup portrait of young woman showing, with his finger, inflamed upper gingiva with pain expression. Dental care and toothache.

What Is Periodontics and What Treatments Does It Offer?

An estimated 42% of Americans aged 30 or older suffers from gum disease. Are you one of them? If so, then you may want to consult with a periodontist.

A periodontist is a type of dentist who specializes in treating issues affecting the gums and bones in the mouth. The name of the branch of dentistry studied by this type of dentist—periodontics—comes from ancient Greek and literally translates to “around”. This is because this type of dentist deals with the areas surrounding the teeth.

Periodontists treat a number of different very common illnesses and ailments, as well as some more serious issues. Read on to learn more about this fascinating branch of dentistry.

What Issues Do Periodontists Treat?

Also knows as Periodontitis, gum disease is one of the most common types of issues a periodontist will come across. Cases can range from mild to severe, with mild cases usually treatable at home. It is largely caused by poor dental hygiene, with flossing and brushing regularly able to improve symptoms in many cases.

On a typical day, a periodontist might also insert dental implants, perform crown-lengthening procedures, and remove bacteria living underneath the gums.

What Other Treatments Do They Offer?

Another part of the job of a periodontist is to perform cosmetic procedures. A cosmetic dental procedure is a treatment that is not medically necessary, but that alters the appearance of a person’s mouth, teeth, or smile. Click here to learn more.

Some of the cosmetic treatments a periodontist might offer include fixing uneven gum lines, reducing the appearance of gums in a person’s smile, or fixing indentations in the gum and the jaw.

How Do I Know if I Need to See a Periodontist?

There are a number of symptoms you can look out for to determine whether you might benefit from a visit to the periodontist. If you notice your gums bleeding when you brush, if you notice your smile has become gummier, or your gums appear to be receding, and if your gums have been painful lately, then these could all be telltale signs of a periodontic issue.

If you’re in doubt, you can go and see your regular dentist, and they will refer you to a periodontist if that’s what you need. Many practices have both general dentists and periodontists under their rooves, making the referral process even easier.

If you think you have an issue, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Leaving things such as receding gums or gum disease untreated can cause them to become much worse in the long term.

Periodontics: Could It Be for You?

Periodontics is a specialized form of dentistry, which sometimes can lead people to second guess whether they should be seeking this type of treatment or not. The most important thing is to listen to your body, and if you think there is an issue with your gums, to consult some type of dentist right away.

If you’ve found this guide helpful, check out the rest of our health content.