The Ontario Society of Periodontists is the voluntary organization of certified periodontal specialists in Ontario whose mission is to serve the providers and recipients of specialty periodontal care in the Province of Ontario. It is the official voice of Ontario Periodontists to organized dental associations, recognized education institutions, professional licensing bodies, and to the public and government.
Periodontics is a specialty of dentistry that deals with the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of periodontal diseases. A Periodontist is a dentist who has trained extensively (an additional 2 to 3 years beyond dental school) in the treatment of oral inflammation. Periodontists are trained to replace lost teeth with the surgical placement of dental implants and to perform cosmetic periodontal procedures. They work closely with your dentist to provide you with optimal oral health care.
Periodontal diseases, also known as gum diseases are bacterial gum infections that destroy the attachment fibers and supporting bone that hold the teeth in the mouth. The main cause of these diseases is bacterial plaque, a sticky, colourless film that constantly forms on the teeth. Daily home oral care, including proper brushing and flossing with regular professional care can prevent plaque build-up. When plague is not removed, it hardened to form calculus (tartar). Professional cleaning is required to remove calculus above and below the gums.
Periodontal diseases can affect one tooth or many teeth. The early stage is painless. At a more advanced stage, bone and supporting tissues of the teeth are destroyed. Periodontal diseases can result in bad breath; red, swollen and bleeding gums and eventually teeth loss. Other signs of periodontal diseases include gums that have been pulled away from the teeth, pus between teeth and gums (leaving a bad taste), a change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite, and a change in the fit of partial dentures. More than 75% of adults over age 35 have some form of periodontal disease.
Your first appointment with your periodontist is an information gathering session. It will begin with your doctor asking you about your medical history, your past and your current dental practices, your social history and oral hygiene routine. We want to know your specific concerns about your gums, your teeth, your smile and what you would like us to achieve with your treatment. Finally, a thorough review of your periodontal (gum) condition including a review of your radiographs will be done.
The doctor will perform a comprehensive clinical exam consisting of an assessment of your oral tissue checking on irregularities and cancer. Measurements are made that include: the mobility of your teeth, the colour and tone of your gum tissues, pocket depths, noting areas of gingival recession and root exposure and determining what periodontal problems you may have. Your doctor will combine this information with radiographs and derive a periodontal diagnosis for you. This diagnosis will include an overall prognosis for your periodontal condition as well as the prognosis for each individual tooth.
Your doctor will discuss all treatment options available to you and review the benefits and risks of each treatment option.