When patients see their general dentist for a routine checkup, they may be concerned if they get a referral to a specialist. Often, the patient does not understand exactly why he or she has to visit the specialist and what the benefits are. A periodontist Long Island is a doctor who specializes in the gums and supporting structures of the teeth. Your doctor may refer you to him or her for many reasons, including these three.
1. Severe gum disease
Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is a progressive condition that causes the gums and bone around the teeth to recede, and eventually teeth are lost. A periodontist can recommend certain treatments like laser therapy to help treat this condition. Advanced gum disease is not reversible, but its progress can be halted in some cases.
2. Implant placement
Some general dentists may not feel comfortable with dental implant surgery and may refer a patient to a periodontist. This is especially true when a sinus lift or bone graft is required before the surgery. The implant procedure usually takes several visits, and the periodontist will take routine X-rays to make sure that proper healing is taking place.
3. Gum surgery
Gum surgery is utilized for a number of reasons. It may be used to correct receding gums, treat gum infections or even for cosmetic reasons. A general dentist may refer to a periodontist who specializes in these intricate procedures. Once the procedure is over, the patient will likely see the periodontist for routine checks.
There are many subspecialties in dentistry, and there is no reason for patients to feel alarmed when referred to one. In-detail discussion with a general dentist about why the referral is necessary may help ease any anxieties. When the patient and dentist both agree on necessary treatment, a trusting relationship can be established.