Frequently Ask Questions
- What is a periodontist?
- Why have I been referred to see a periodontist?
- What will happen at my first visit?
- Will it hurt?
- How much will it cost?
- When will I be seeing my general dentist again?
- What if I don’t have the periodontal gum treatment?
What is a periodontist?
A periodontist is a dental specialist who focuses on the management of periodontal diseases. Periodontal diseases are conditions affecting the supporting gums and bone around teeth. Periodontists are also trained in the placement of dental implants and the management of the tissues around implants, this is particularly important when a good aesthetic result is to be achieved. Periodontists complete 5 years of dental school training, practicing for a number of years at a general dental practice before completing an additional 3 years of university based specialist training.
Why have I been referred to see a periodontist?
There may be a variety of reasons for your referral including the management of periodontal disease, a cosmetic or corrective gum procedure such as crown lengthening surgery, or possibly for the placement of a dental implant.
Your general dentist has referred you because they feel that you require assessment and treatment at a specialist level. Periodontics is a specialised field and your general dentist may not have the training to perform many of these procedures.
What will happen at my first visit?
Your first visit will be a consultation and treatment planning appointment, commencing with review of your chief concerns and any urgent problems, and medical and dental history. The periodontist will examine your gums, check to see if there is gum recession, check the teeth to see if any teeth are loose and assess how the teeth fit together when biting. Your periodontist will also assess the bone levels around the teeth and measure the pockets around the gums.
You will need to bring your referral letter and any relevant x-rays from your referring doctor. It is also helpful if you bring a list of the medications that you are currently taking, as you will need to fill a patient registration form on your arrival.
Will it hurt?
Your periodontist will be as gentle as possible but there may be some discomfort depending on the procedure. Your periodontist will discuss with you what you can expect to experience during and after any procedures.
How much will it cost?
This depends on what treatment you require, this will be established after your first consultation and treatment planning appointment with your periodontist.
The pricing of the periodontal treatment required may also vary, depending upon the complexity and length of the procedure.
When will I be seeing my general dentist again?
Your periodontist will be working closely with your general dentist. It is important for you to continue seeing your dentist for regular check-ups for maintenance of your overall dental health.
What if I don’t have the periodontal gum treatment?
Periodontal disease is like any other chronic disease, such as high blood pressure and diabetes, it is important to have regular monitoring and maintenance of your condition. Periodontal disease is a progressive and painless infection. Unstabilised periodontal disease can cause further bone loss, loss of teeth and further expense. If your teeth are lost, dentures are never as effective as having your own teeth.