What is a Periodontist?

A Periodontist is a specialized type of Dentist. Also known as: Gum Disease Specialist, Periodontal Dentist.

A periodontist is a dentist who is an expert in the treatment of oral inflammation, and who knows how to prevent, diagnose, and treat periodontal disease. Periodontists receive extensive training in these areas, and are familiar with the latest techniques for diagnosing and treating periodontal disease.

What does a Periodontist do?

A periodontist is a dentist who is an expert in the treatment of oral inflammation, and who knows how to prevent, diagnose, and treat periodontal disease.

Some periodontal needs can be managed by a general dentist, however, more and more patients are showing signs of periodontal disease. Research also suggests a link between periodontal disease and other chronic diseases of aging, therefore there may be a need for periodontal treatment that has an increased level of expertise by a trained specialist. Patients who have moderate or severe levels of periodontal disease can be managed by a partnership between their dentist and a periodontist.

Periodontists treat cases that are more problematic, such as those with severe gum disease or with a complicated medical history. Treatments include scaling and root planing (in which the infected surface of the root is cleaned) or root surface debridement (in which damaged tissue is removed). Periodontists also treat patients with severe gum problems using a range of surgical procedures. In addition, they are specially trained in the placement, maintenance, and repair of dental implants.

During the first visit, the periodontist typically reviews the patient’s complete medical and dental histories. It is extremely important for the periodontist to know if any medications are being taken or if the patient is being treated for any condition that can affect periodontal care, such as heart disease, diabetes, or pregnancy.

The periodontist will then examine the gums, check to see if there is any gum line recession, assess how the teeth fit together when biting, and will check the teeth to see if any are loose. The periodontist will also take a small measuring instrument (called a probe) and place it between the teeth and gums to determine the depth of those spaces, known as periodontal pockets. This helps the periodontist assess the health of the gums. X-rays may also be taken to observe the health of the bone below the gum line.

Find your perfect career

Would you make a good periodontist? Sokanu's free assessment reveals how compatible you are with a career across 5 dimensions!

80% Match?
Take the free career test

What is the workplace of a Periodontist like?

Dentists and periodontists work in similar settings, such as solo practices, group practices, hospitals, dental schools and other health clinics. In some cases, dentists and periodontists will work in the same clinic, allowing them to collaborate to treat patients. These clinics may include other dental specialists, such as orthodontists.

Videos

Jobs

Title Company Location Info

Further Reading

  • What is a Periodontist? www.perio.org

    A periodontist is a dentist who specializes in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of periodontal disease, and in the placement of dental implants.

  • Advice for the Aspiring Periodontist www.ucdenver.edu

    We sat down with Dr. Charles Powell to get his thoughts on specializing in periodontics, getting into a residency, and cool things happening at the University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine.

  • Periodontist – A Look At The Role Of These Gum Specialists dentalcarematters.com

    Periodontal disease is a complicated process of gum tissue breakdown. This process is affected by a person’s health history, medications and diet as well as professional and home dental care. A periodontist will take all of these factors into account.

  • Common Personality Traits www.adea.org

    Dentistry is an unusual profession because while dentists are mostly focused on patient care, they also often own and run their own businesses. Many dentists have a diverse set of personality traits that allow them to work both closely with patients and be successful managers of their practices.

Similar Careers

Collections With This Career

Jobs for people who are interested in Healthcare service
Discover careers for people who are interested in Healthcare service. Read More

Find your perfect career

Would you make a good periodontist? Sokanu's free assessment reveals how compatible you are with a career across 5 dimensions!

80% Match?
Take the free career test

×