If you are considering seeing a specialist for your dental needs, you may be wondering what the difference is between a periodontist and a dentist. The difference between a periodontist and a dentist can often be confusing for patients.
Both have gone through years of schooling and are required to complete continuing education to maintain their licenses. And both are qualified to provide you with essential dental care, but there are some key differences between the two.
So, what exactly is the difference between a periodontist and a dentist? We reached out to a periodontist in Torrance to find out. And here is a brief explanation of the difference between these two types of dental professionals.
Who Are Dentists?
Dentists are trained to provide general preventive care for your teeth and gums. They can perform regular cleaning and checkups, do teeth extractions, as well as place fillings and crowns.
General dentists can also provide you with some basic orthodontic treatments, such as braces. However, for more complex treatment, you will need to see an orthodontist, a dental surgeon, or a periodontist.
In terms of education, general dentists have to complete graduation from dental school to get a DDS or DMD degree and then undergo training before starting their individual practice.
Who Are Periodontists?
If you have a more complex dental problem like gum disease, your dentist may refer you to a periodontist. The word is derived from Greek and means “around the teeth”.
Periodontists are dental specialists who focus on the gums and bones around the teeth. They mainly specialize in the treatment of periodontal disease which is an inflammation of the gums caused by bacteria. Periodontists are also qualified to place dental implants, which are artificial teeth that are placed in the jawbone to replace missing teeth.
They often treat more complex cases of gum disease like periodontitis but many periodontists even offer preventative services like cleaning and cavity filling.
To become a periodontist, the person has to complete graduation from dental school to get a DDS or DMD degree and then undergo specialized training in the periodontics residency program.
When Should You Visit A Dentist?
A general dentist usually provides preventive dental care services to ensure your teeth are healthy says this emergency dentist in Arlington. So you should visit them for regular dental checkups, to get your annual teeth cleaning, extractions, minor orthodontic issues, or to fill a cavity. You can also visit them for emergencies like tooth pain caused by injury or tooth decay.
When Should You Visit A Periodontist?
If your dentist notices a problem with your gums or jawbone during your regular checkups, you will be referred to a periodontist for the same. But if you notice any of the signs below, you should reach out to a periodontist near you to get their opinion.
- Bite issues: If you notice a shift in your bite pattern, or your teeth feel unusual while chewing food, you must see a periodontist to assess your jawbone.
- Loose feeling teeth: Loose teeth are a sign you need to schedule an appointment with a periodontist for diagnosing gum diseases.
- Receding gums: If your gums are receding, it is a sign of gum disease and you should get examined by a periodontist to treat it right away.
- Pain and discomfort: If you are experiencing pain in your teeth and gums, you should schedule a visit with a periodontist right away.
- Bleeding gums: Swollen, painful, or bleeding gums are common symptoms of inflammation of the gums and could turn into serious gum diseases. So see a periodontist right away.
- If you have a history of gum disease: If you have had bleeding gums or other gum-related problems in the past treated by a general dentist and still haven’t found relief, it is time to see a periodontist for advanced treatment options.
What Happens During A Consultation With A Periodontist?
When you see a periodontist, they will first ask about your symptoms and then conduct a thorough examination of your gums, teeth, and jawbone with the help of tools and even X-rays.
Based on the diagnosis, they will recommend a customized treatment plan that improves your oral health. If you have a medical history or suffer from conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, or sleep apnea, you should mention it during the appointment to help the dentist find a potential link with dental issues.
Healthy gums are the secret to healthy, long-lasting teeth. So you should take special care of your gums by visiting periodontists.
If you are looking for a periodontist in Torrance, Ca you should visit the Permadent clinic right away. Dr. Perry R. Klokkevold is one of the best periodontists in the country and will provide amazing dental care to make sure your gums and teeth are healthy. So call up the clinic or visit their website today to schedule a consultation right away.