Generally, gum disease can be asymptomatic meaning that it is usually silent. The early warning signs of gum disease can be slight bleeding in the gums when you are brushing or flossing. You will notice around the roots of the teeth the slight red inflammation. Your teeth may be losing periodontal attachments (bones that are the foundation of the teeth). Since gum disease is asymptomatic, there are times where you may not notice anything at all! When it is left untreated, the consequences of gum disease are equal permanent tooth loss.
Periodontal disease treatment depends on the cause so early detection is crucial. At the early stage, your periodontist will instruct you to brush and floss at home while making sure that you will receive thorough, professional teeth cleaning known as scaling and root planning in the office. Moderate to advanced disease stages may involve occlusal treatments with or without surgical procedures.
A periodontist is a specialist that takes extra training to learn skills that requires more advanced stages of gum diseases. As a periodontist, they work hand in hand with general dental practitioners and specialists to diagnose and create a treatment plan.
Should you have any periodontal concerns, a great place to start is by going to your general dentist, who will then begin to examine your teeth before referring you to a periodontal specialist if he/she feels that your condition requires special attention. If your dentists find that your treatment is needed beyond the scope of general dental, you will be referred.