You may start by seeing your dentist. Depending on the extent of your periodontitis, your dentist may refer you to a specialist in the treatment of periodontal disease (periodontist).
Here's some information to help you get ready for your appointment and what you can do to prepare.
What you can do
To get ready for your appointment, make a list of:
- Any symptoms you're experiencing, including any that may seem unrelated to the reason for your appointment.
- Key personal information, such as any medical conditions you may have.
- All medications you take, including vitamins, herbs or other supplements, and the dosages.
- Questions to ask your dentist to make the most of your time together.
Some questions to ask your dentist may include:
- What's likely causing my symptoms?
- What kinds of tests, if any, do I need?
- What's the best course of action?
- Will my dental insurance cover the treatments you're recommending?
- What are the alternatives to the approach you're suggesting?
- Are there any restrictions that I need to follow?
- What steps can I take at home to keep my gums and teeth healthy?
- Are there any brochures or other printed material that I can have?
- What websites do you recommend?
Don't hesitate to ask other questions during your appointment.
What to expect from your dentist
Your dentist may ask you questions about your symptoms. Be ready to answer them to reserve time to go over any points you want to focus on. Your dentist may ask:
- When did you first start experiencing symptoms?
- Have your symptoms been continuous or occasional?
- How often do you brush your teeth?
- Do you use dental floss? How often?
- How often do you see a dentist?
- What medical conditions do you have?
- What medications do you take?
- Do you use tobacco products?
April 14, 2017
- Periodontitis (pyorrhea). Merck Manual Professional Version. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/dental-disorders/periodontal-disorders/periodontitis. Accessed Nov. 10, 2016.
- Periodontal (gum) disease: Causes, symptoms, and treatments. National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. http://www.nidcr.nih.gov/oralhealth/Topics/GumDiseases/PeriodontalGumDisease.htm#. Accessed Nov. 10, 2016.
- Gum disease information. American Academy of Periodontology. https://www.perio.org/consumer/gum-disease.htm. Accessed Nov. 10, 2016.
- Wilder RS, et al. Gingivitis and periodontitis in adults: Classification and dental treatment. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 11, 2016.
- Smiley CJ, et al. Evidence-based clinical practice guideline on the nonsurgical treatment of chronic periodontitis by means of scaling and root planning with or without adjuncts. Journal of the American Dental Association. 2015;146:525.
- Gum disease. American Dental Association. http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/g/gum-disease. Accessed Nov. 11, 2016.
- Oral health. American Dental Association. http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/o/oral-health. Accessed Nov. 11, 2016.
- Periodontal treatments and procedures. American Academy of Periodontology. https://www.perio.org/consumer/treatments-procedures. Accessed Nov. 11, 2016.
- Brushing your teeth. American Dental Association. http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/b/brushing-your-teeth. Accessed Nov. 15, 2016.
- Salinas TJ (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Dec. 4, 2016.