Have you been referred to a periodontist? Your dentist may have recommended that you see a periodontist for gum disease or to get a dental implant. Periodontists specialize in conditions and procedures for the gums and support structures for your teeth.
If you’re going to a periodontist for the first time, you may not know what to expect. Here’s a guide to your first visit to the periodontist.
The first step in beginning periodontal treatment is a consultation. You will meet with a periodontist who will explain their services and ask you some questions about your oral health. It is typical for your periodontist to request your records from your dentist in order to know your dental history and apply that information to your periodontal care.
Evaluation of Your Oral Health
After the initial consultation, your periodontist will evaluate your current oral health. A thorough examination will be conducted to check the health of your teeth, gums, and jaw. X-Rays may also be required to assess the condition of your jaw and teeth.
Based on the results of your evaluation, your periodontist will discuss options for treatment. This could include scaling and root planing for gum disease, crown lengthening, gum grafting, ridge preservation, dental implants, bone grafting, and more. Based on your needs and your goals, an individualized treatment plan will be created to achieve the desired results.
Your periodontist may or may not provide any treatment on your first visit. If not, an appointment will be scheduled for you to begin treatment. If your periodontist recommends beginning treatment on your first visit and you agree, the first step in your treatment or procedure may be performed. Preliminary treatment may include impressions, digital images, teeth cleaning, tooth extraction, and other preparatory steps for future procedures.
Insurance and Payments
Insurance coverage is often discussed at the initial consultation to determine whether or not your plan and provider are in-network or accepted. Insurance can make your periodontal care more affordable. A periodontist who is in-network with your insurance provider will cost you less out of pocket because the rates for specific services are pre-negotiated. Dental insurance does not necessarily cover all of the cost of your care, but your out of pocket cost is usually less than the amount your insurance covers.
Financing is also an option to cover your care. If you don’t have insurance or if your out of pocket portion is still too much, you can finance it through CareCredit or a lender of your choice. CareCredit is a highly recommended credit option for a wide range of medical costs with little or no interest for a promotional period of time.
What to Bring to Your First Periodontal Appointment
There are a few items you should be sure to bring with you to your appointment or make sure they are sent ahead of time, such as:
- Insurance card or information. If you have a dental insurance card, be sure to bring it to your first appointment. If you don’t have a card, gather all of the information from your provider, including the provider’s name, policy numbers, and plan name. If your coverage is through your spouse’s employer, you may need their information as well.
- Referral from your dentist. Most likely your dentist has already sent an official referral to your periodontist, but if not, it helps to have a written referral. This shows that you are currently under the care of a dentist who has recommended periodontal care.
- X-Rays or dental records. Dental records with X-Rays are usually sent directly from your dentist to the periodontist. However, you are welcome to get copies from your dentist and bring them with you to your appointment.
- List of medications. Bring a complete list of all of the medications you take. This is important for your periodontist to plan your treatments and procedures.
Holzinger Periodontics and Dental Implants is Accepting New Patients
If your dentist has recommended that you see a periodontist, Holzinger Periodontics and Dental Implants is currently accepting new patients. From treating gum disease to placing dental implants, we provide a complete range of periodontal services. Sometimes you need specialized care beyond what your general dentist can provide, and Holzinger Periodontics is here for you.
Call 860-347-8457 to schedule an appointment at our Middletown office or 860-224-0433 for our New Britain office. You can also request an appointment online. We look forward to providing you with quality periodontal care.