If your dentist or a hygienist detects signs of periodontal disease during a cleaning or exam, they may recommend a consultation with a periodontist.
You do not need a referral to see a periodontist at our office. If you experience any of the following symptoms, we recommend scheduling an appointment with us right away as they often point to infection:
- Unexplained bleeding while brushing or eating normal foods.
- Ongoing halitosis (bad breath) that persists following oral cleaning
- Loose teeth and gum recession.
- Heart disease, diabetes, osteopenia, or osteoporosis. These are often diagnosed with correlating periodontal infections, as the bacteria may spread through the bloodstream to other vulnerable areas of the body.
- Any of the following alterations to the smoothness or coral pink color of the inside of the mouth, as it could be a warning sign for a pathological process, including oral cancer:
- Reddish patches (erythroplasia)
- Whitish patches (leukoplakia)
- A sore that won’t heal and bleeds easily
- A bump or mass on the skin lining the inside of the mouth
- Chronic sore throat or hoarseness
- Difficulty chewing or swallowing normal foods
These changes may be seen on the lips, cheeks, palate, gum tissue around the teeth, tongue, face, and/or neck. These signs are not always painful and do not always indicate oral cancer, but we recommend contacting the office if they appear, in addition to performing a monthly oral cancer self-examination. The mouth is one of the body’s most telling warning systems, and suspicious areas should not be ignored.