Periodontics is a dental specialty that involves the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the supporting and surrounding tissues of the teeth or their substitutes and the maintenance of the health, function and aesthetics of these structures and tissues.  Periodontal or gum diseases may involve serious infections that lead to tooth loss if left untreated.  One tooth or many teeth may be affected by periodontal conditions.




The American Academy of Periodontology explains that the main cause of gum diseases, such as gingivitis and periodontitits, is plaque.  However, many additional factors affect the health of your gums, including genetics, smoking or tobacco use, stress, medications, clenching or grinding, diabetes and systemic diseases, poor nutrition, and obesity.  Hormonal changes associated with puberty, pregnancy and menopause also impact periodontal health.  Persistent swollen, red or bleeding gums, tooth sensitivity, and bad breath are among the warning signs of periodontal disease.




A periodontist is a dentist who specializes in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of periodontal disease and in the placement of dental implants. A periodontist typically has had two to three years of additional training in diagnosing and treating gum disease and its associated problems. Periodontists are familiar with the latest techniques for diagnosing and treating periodontal disease.




Dr. Salvatore Pizzino checks for the warning signs of periodontal disease, including:


  • Red, swollen or tender gums or other pain in your mouth
  • Bleeding while brushing, flossing, or eating hard food
  • Gums that are receding or pulling away, causing the teeth to look longer
  • Loose or separating teeth
  • Pus between your gums and teeth
  • Sores in your mouth
  • Persistent bad breath
  • A change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite
  • A change in the fit of partial dentures
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