When to See a Periodontist

Recognizing signs of gum disease

Periodontal treatment may be sought in several ways. Your general dentist or a hygienist may recommend a consultation with a periodontist if they find signs of periodontal disease through the course of a checkup or other dental care appointment. You may also decide to see a periodontist on your own, as a referral is not necessary to be seen at our office.

In fact, if you experience any of these symptoms, we encourage you to schedule an appointment at our office without delay:

  • Bleeding while brushing or eating normal foods. Unexplained bleeding while performing regular cleaning or consuming food is the most common sign of a periodontal infection.
  • Bad breath. Ongoing halitosis (bad breath), which continues despite rigorous oral cleaning, can point to periodontitis, gingivitis, or the beginnings of a gum infection.
  • Loose teeth and gum recession. Longer-looking and loose-feeling teeth can indicate recession of the gums and/or bone loss as a result of periodontal disease.
  • Related health concerns. Patients with heart disease, diabetes, osteopenia or osteoporosis are often diagnosed with correlating periodontal infections. The bacterial infection can spread through the bloodstream, affecting other areas of the body.

The inside of the mouth is normally lined with a special type of skin (mucosa) that is smooth and coral pink in color. Any alteration in this appearance could be a warning sign for a pathological process. The most serious of these is oral cancer.

The following are common signs of a pathologic process or cancerous growth:

  • Reddish patches (erythroplasia) or whitish patches (leukoplakia) in the mouth.
  • A sore that fails to heal and bleeds easily.
  • A lump or thickening on the skin lining the inside of the mouth.
  • Chronic sore throat or hoarseness.
  • Difficulty chewing or swallowing.

These changes can be detected on the lips, cheeks, palate, and gum tissue around the teeth, tongue, face, and/or neck. Pain does not always occur with pathology and, curiously, is not often associated with oral cancer. However, any patient with facial and/or oral pain without an obvious cause or reason may also be at risk for oral cancer. We recommend performing an oral cancer self-examination monthly. Do not ignore suspicious lumps or sores.

Remember that your mouth is one of your body’s most important warning systems when your health may be in jeopardy.  Please contact us to schedule an appointment.

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Baton Rouge Perio

10723 N. Oak Hills Parkway, Building B
Baton Rouge, LA 70810

Tel: 225-396-4587
Fax: 225-769-9939

Baton Rouge Periodontists, Dr. Kenneth Markle and Dr. Jenny Herman, provide a variety of surgical and non-surgical services for the treatment of periodontal issues. We pride ourselves on the fact that we are very conservative in our treatment recommendations and limit surgery to the areas where it is absolutely necessary.

Proudly serving Baton Rouge Louisiana and the cities of Gonzales LA Prairieville LA • Denham Springs LA Central LA • Hammond LA Zachary LA • St. Francisville LA • Baker LA • LaPlace LA

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