Periodontics at Mayo Clinic

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Periodontists are dentists specializing in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases involving the gums and bone surrounding the teeth, and the mucosal tissues of the mouth, and in the placement and maintenance of dental implants.

Consulting staff periodontists at Mayo are diplomates of the American Board of Periodontology. They provide patient care and direct a three-year graduate training program in Periodontics. Mayo periodontists are actively engaged in research relating to bone regeneration around dental implants.

Hygiene

The periodontal dental hygienist is a licensed primary health care provider. As co-therapists, the periodontist (a specialist in gum disease) and hygienist will assess the oral health care for the patient. The patient will be educated about the dental disease process, treatment plans discussed, and individualized home care regimens developed.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get an appointment with a periodontist?
Your general dentist or physician may refer you for a periodontal consultation, or you may call 507-284-4472. If you have been a dental hygiene patient at Mayo in the past, you may call 507-284-4273 for an appointment.

When do I need an appointment with a periodontist and a periodontal dental hygienist?
If your mouth exhibits the following signs: swollen, red and bleeding gums, an unpleasant taste in your mouth or if you notice loose teeth.

What should I expect from a consultation with a periodontist?
Radiographic and clinical examination are used to determine the existence and severity of periodontal disease. Individual treatment needs are discussed, and you may be scheduled with a periodontal dental hygienist.

What is periodontal disease?
Periodontal disease, which was formerly known as pyorrhea, is a bacterial disease that attacks the soft tissues and bone that surround and support your teeth. Because periodontal disease is often painless, it may go unnoticed. This is why daily oral hygiene and regular dental checkups are important.

How often should I have my teeth cleaned?
This depends on your individual needs. The periodontist and the periodontal dental hygienist determine the necessary interval after initial treatment is completed.