A Periodontist is a dentist who specializes in the soft tissues of the mouth and the underlying bone which supports the teeth. A dentist must first graduate from an accredited dental school before undertaking an additional three years of study within a periodontology residency training program in order to qualify as a periodontist. Dr. Pat Kelsey performed his training at The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio, and Dr. Matt Kelsey underwent his training at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis — both internationally respected programs in clinically relevant, evidence-based periodontics.
The focus of residency training is both surgical and non-surgical management of periodontal disease and the placement of dental implants.
A Periodontist is mainly concerned with preventing the onset of gum disease (periodontal disease), diagnosing conditions affecting the gums and bone, and treating gingivitis, periodontitis and bone loss. Periodontal disease is a progressive condition, and is the leading cause of tooth loss among adults in the developed world.
A Periodontist is able to treat slight, mild, moderate and advanced gum disease by first addressing the bacterial infection that is causing the problem, providing periodontal treatment, then providing information and education on good oral hygiene and the effective cleaning of the teeth.
Periodontal disease begins when the toxins found in bacterial plaque that are present on a person’s teeth start to attack the soft or gingival tissue surrounding the teeth. This bacteria embeds itself in the gum and rapidly breeds, causing a low-grade bacterial infection. As the infection progresses, it starts to burrow deeper into the tissue causing inflammation or irritation between the teeth and gums. The response of the body is to destroy the infected tissue, which is why the gums appear to recede. The resulting pockets between the teeth deepen, and if no treatment is sought, the hard tissue which makes up the bone also begins to be destroyed causing unstable teeth and tooth loss.
There are several ways treatment from a Periodontist may be sought. In the course of a regular dental check up, if the general dentist or hygienist finds symptoms of gingivitis or rapidly progressing periodontal disease, a consultation with a Periodontist may be recommended. However, a referral is not necessary for a periodontal consultation.
If you experience any of these signs and symptoms, it is important that you schedule an appointment with a Periodontist without delay:
Before initiating any dental treatment, the Periodontist must extensively examine the gums, bone and general condition of the teeth. When gingivitis or periodontal disease is officially diagnosed, the Periodontist has a number of surgical and non surgical options available to treat the underlying infection, halt the recession of the soft tissue, and restructure or replace teeth which may be missing.
If you think you may have periodontal disease, please call the Kelsey Periodontal Group at 402-934-4745 and schedule a consultation.