Visiting the general dentist for regular checkups, teeth cleanings, and maintaining good oral health is expected. However, you must see a specialized dentist if you experience severe dental issues, such as consistent tooth pain, dental infections, and gum diseases.
This article will discuss the significant differences between an endodontist and a periodontist. It’s essential to learn whom to visit and where to seek specialized dental care whenever you face severe dental issues.
Who is an Endodontist?
Endodontists are specialized dentists who receive additional training on tooth structures, infections, and pain. They specialize in addressing tooth infections and toothaches caused by internal issues. An endodontist treats infected tooth pulp, roots, and related dental pain. In addition, they are trained in diagnosing the internal problems of your tooth.
The internal tooth structure comprises living cells, including blood vessels, pulp tissues, and nerves that extend to the tooth’s root and bone. Endodontic treatment includes root canal therapy, which treats and removes the infected tooth pulp to prevent the further spread of microbial infection and complete tooth loss. If you don’t see an endodontist on time, this infection may spread, forming complications like abscess formation and infections to adjacent teeth.
According to an endodontist’s definition, they are a specialist trained to treat tooth sensitivity, tooth pain, swelling, tooth infections, and other traumatic dental injuries. In short, an endodontist will be your savior if it’s the question of saving your dying teeth.
When to See an Endodontist?
The following signs and symptoms show you may need to visit a trained endodontist soon.
- Tooth pain
- You are experiencing tooth sensitivity to hot or cold
- You have injured your tooth
- You have swelling around your teeth, gums, and facial muscles.
Infections and pain in and around your tooth’s pulp or root may occur from a long untreated cavity or other dental issues. However, before visiting an endodontist’s clinic, see a general dentist who will check the severity of your dental conditions. After evaluating your pain and the extent of damage, your Jacksonville TX dentist will refer you to a specialized endodontist.
Who is a Periodontist?
Periodontists are concerned about managing and treating gum disease and gum inflammation. They specialize in detecting, dining, and preventing gum diseases or infections. Periodontists also educate people on the importance of caring for your gums to prevent further damage to your tooth’s sensitive parts, such as pulp and root.
According to the periodontist definition, these specialists are trained in preventing, diagnosing, and treating periodontitis. Periodontitis is a common oral health condition, and more than 47% of American adults are suffering from this. Periodontitis is an acute gum infection or disease that may damage the soft tissues surrounding your teeth. It may be caused due to bacterial exposure in your mouth, leading to infection in the dental tissues and inflammation around the teeth.
The severity of periodontitis may increase if you leave the inflamed and bleeding gums untreated for a long time. When bacteria stay on your teeth for a long time, a thin film called plaque is formed. The bacteria accumulated in plaque produce harmful acids after every meal, which may destroy your tooth enamel, thus causing gum diseases (gingivitis) and cavities.
So, a periodontist examines infected gums and oral soft tissues and detects potential problems, such as gum recession and issues below the gum line. Periodontists may treat these conditions with laser dentistry or perform a minor surgical procedure on your hard and soft tissues. Apart from treating gum diseases, periodontists are specialized and trained in installing and maintaining dental implants.
When to See a Periodontist?
If you experience the following signs and symptoms, you may need to visit a periodontist immediately.
- Red, swollen, painful, and tender gums
- Bleeding gums while brushing or flossing
- Chronic bad breath (also known as Halitosis)
- Increased tooth sensitivity to hot or cold
- Gum recession (loss of gum tissues around your teeth, exposing the roots and tooth loss)
- Loosened teeth (in adults), which cause eating and chewing problems
Since our gums act as the protective cover on our teeth by holding them together, they prevent tooth loosening or bacterial infection exposure. Long untreated gum issues may affect your teeth’ health, requiring you to consult both an endodontist and a periodontist simultaneously.
What to Expect from an Endodontist vs. Periodontist?
An endodontist will provide the following services –
- Treating chipped, cracked, or broken teeth
- Diagnosing complex causes of tooth pain and sensitivity
- Treating infected teeth
- Preventing and treating tooth infection and inflammation
- Treating dental abscess
- Performing root canal therapy
- Saving your natural tooth
On the other hand, the services offered by a Texas periodontist include the following –
- Periodontal disease treatment
- Tooth extractions
- Laser periodontal surgery
- Dental implants
- Crown lengthening
- Gum grafting
- Sedation dentistry
In a nutshell, one thing is clear, if we delay the treatment of even minor dental issues, they may lead to severe diseases and infections over time. So, if you experience one of the above signs and symptoms, visit your general dentist first. After your dentist team evaluates the extent and type of your dental problem, they will decide whether to refer you to an endodontist or a periodontist.