Periodontists deal with the surrounding and supporting structures of the teeth, most notably the gums. It requires 2-3 additional years of training following dental school to become a periodontist. Periodontists treat gingivitis and periodontitis, providing a wide range of services, including:
- Crown lengthening
- Soft tissue grafting
- Bone grafting
- Gingival flap surgery
- Soft tissue recontouring or removal
- Hard tissue contouring
- Dental implant placement procedures
Periodontics is a field of dental specialty focused on preventing, diagnosis, and treating gum disease and other oral conditions that affect the gums and soft tissues of the mouth. Periodontal (gum) disease is an infectious disease caused by bacteria in plaque. When plaque accumulates on the teeth, the bacteria inflame and infect the gum tissues. If left untreated in the early stage, it can develop into a more serious form and cause serious damage to your oral health, including bone degeneration, tooth loss, and gum recession.
The early stage of periodontal disease is known as gingivitis. In this stage, the gums are red, tender, and swollen, and may bleed easily. The more advanced stage of gum disease is known as periodontitis. This form of gum disease typically involves gum recession and other non-reversible damage to the teeth, gums, and supporting structures. Gingivitis can be controlled and even reversed through professional cleanings and good at-home oral care. Periodontitis cannot be cured, and requires frequent treatments and close monitoring in order to be managed.