What is a periodontist?

For advanced gum disease, your dentist may refer you to a periodontist. Watch as Dr. Maria Lopez Howell explains what a periodontist does and what types of treatments to expect.

Jonathan B. Levine, DMD
If you have areas in your mouth that are breaking down the supporting structure of the teeth, your dentist will send you to a periodontist. This specialist examines, diagnoses and treats the manifestations of gum problems. He’ll eliminate the pockets, bone or tissue grafting, place implants, and any of the whole host of requirements necessary to heal any problems with the supporting structure of the teeth.
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Periodontists are experts in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of periodontal or gum disease, as well as in the placement of dental implants. Periodontists receive extensive training, including three additional years of education beyond dental school. Periodontists are familiar with the latest diagnostic techniques and treatments for periodontal disease, and they are trained in cosmetic periodontal procedures.

Periodontal disease is commonly known as gum disease. A periodontist is a dentist that specializes in the supporting structures around the teeth and treats various forms of gum disease. A periodontist has additional training after completing dental school.


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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.