Transforming Lives: The Art of Periodontal Dentistry and Implants

art of periodontal therapy and dental implant

Your smile is your greatest asset. It’s the first thing people notice, and it can profoundly impact your self-confidence and overall well-being. But what happens when your smile is compromised by gum disease or missing teeth?

      • The Art of Periodontal Dentistry

    Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is an inflammatory condition that affects the gums and supporting bone structures. If left untreated, it can lead to tooth loss and other serious health complications.

        • The Magic of Dental Implants

      Dental implants are the gold standard for tooth replacement, offering a natural-looking, long-lasting solution. These artificial tooth roots are surgically placed into the jawbone, fusing with the bone over time. This creates a stable foundation for the attachment of crowns, bridges, or dentures.

      What is Periodontal Dentistry?

      Periodontology, also known as periodontal dentistry, is the speciality of dentistry that focuses on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases that affect the gums and supporting structures of the teeth. Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects the tissues that support the teeth, including the gums, bone, and periodontal ligament. If left untreated, periodontal disease can damage the gum tissue and bone, causing teeth to loosen or fall out.

      Periodontics Definition

      Periodontics is derived from the Greek words “peri”, meaning “around”, and “odonto” meaning “tooth.” Periodontists are dentists who have undergone additional training to specialise in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of periodontal disease. They have a deep understanding of the complex structures that support the teeth and the diseases that can affect them.

      Types of Gum Disease

      There are two main types of periodontal disease:

          • Gingivitis: Gingivitis is the earliest stage of periodontal disease. It is characterised by inflammation of the gums, which may be red, swollen, and bleed easily. Gingivitis is reversible with good oral hygiene.

          • Periodontitis: Periodontitis is a more severe form of periodontal disease that affects the gums, bone, and periodontal ligament. If left untreated, periodontitis can lead to tooth loss.

        There are also two other less common types of periodontal disease:

            • Necrotising periodontal disease: This is a rare and severe form of periodontal disease that can destroy gum tissue, bone, and other soft tissues. It is most common in people with weakened immune systems.

            • Periodontitis as a manifestation of systemic diseases: This type of periodontal disease is associated with certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, HIV/AIDS, and rheumatoid arthritis.

          What do you need to do if you have periodontal (Gum) disease?

          Periodontal disease is a serious but manageable condition. If you have periodontal disease, there are several things you can do to treat it and prevent it from getting worse.

          Treatments for periodontal disease

          There are two main types of treatment for periodontal disease: non-surgical and surgical.

          Non-surgical treatment

          Non-surgical treatment is used for mild to moderate periodontal disease. It includes:

              • Scaling and root planing: Your dentist or dental hygienist will remove plaque and tartar from below your gum line. This is usually done under local anaesthesia.

              • Antibiotics: Antibiotics may be prescribed to help control the infection.

              • Oral hygiene education: Your dentist will teach you how to brush, floss, and use other oral hygiene tools to keep your gums healthy.

            Surgical Periodontal Therapy

            Surgical periodontal therapy is used for more severe periodontal disease. There are a number of different surgical procedures that can be used, including:

                • Flap surgery: Your dentist will lift back your gum tissue to clean plaque and tartar from below the gum line and to reshape the bone that supports your teeth.

                • Bone grafting: This procedure is used to replace bone that has been lost to periodontal disease.

                • Soft tissue grafts: This procedure is used to replace gum tissue that has been lost to periodontal disease.

              Periodontal Supportive Therapy (Periodontal Maintenance Program)

              Periodontal Supportive Therapy (PST), also known as a periodontal maintenance program, is a long-term treatment plan that is designed to help you keep your gums healthy after you have been treated for periodontal disease. PST usually involves regular cleanings with your dentist or dental hygienist every 3 to 6 months. Your dental hygienist will also work with you to develop a personalised home care plan.

              Dental Hygienist in the Periodontal Practice

              Dental hygienists play an important role in the treatment of periodontal disease. They provide a variety of services, including:

                  • Cleanings: Dental hygienists remove plaque, tartar, and stains from your teeth and below your gum line.

                  • Oral hygiene education: Dental hygienists teach you how to brush, floss, and use other oral hygiene tools to keep your gums healthy.

                  • Periodontal charting: Dental hygienists record the depth of the pockets between your gums and your teeth. This information is used to track the progress of your treatment.

                Can You Get Dental Implants With Periodontal?

                Dental implants have become a popular and effective solution for individuals dealing with tooth loss. However, the question arises: Can you get dental implants with periodontal disease? Let’s delve into the relationship between dental implants and periodontal health.

                    • Dental Implants and Periodontal Disease:

                  A periodontist plays a crucial role in the integration of dental implants with periodontal health. Periodontal implant procedures are often considered when a patient has experienced tooth loss due to periodontitis, a severe form of gum disease. While dental implants are a remarkable advancement in dental technology, the presence of periodontal disease can complicate the process.

                      • Periodontal Treatment Before Dental Implants:

                    Before undergoing dental implant procedures, it is essential to address any existing periodontal issues. A periodontist and implant specialist may recommend gum disease therapy to ensure the success of the implant. This therapy aims to treat and stabilise the gum disease before proceeding with the implantation process.

                    During gum disease therapy, the periodontist focuses on reducing inflammation, controlling infection, and preventing further damage to the supporting structures of the teeth. Once the periodontal disease is under control, the patient can move forward with the dental implant procedure.

                        • What Happens When Gum Disease Occurs After Implant:

                      Despite careful planning and treatment, there can be instances where gum disease occurs after dental implant placement. This scenario emphasises the importance of regular follow-up appointments with a periodontist to monitor oral health.

                      In the event of gum disease affecting an existing implant, prompt action is necessary. The periodontist will assess the situation and recommend appropriate interventions, which may include additional therapy or, in extreme cases, implant removal.


                      In conclusion, while the relationship between dental implants and periodontal disease requires careful consideration, advancements in periodontal therapy and implantology make it possible for many individuals with a history of gum disease to benefit from dental implants. Collaborating with a skilled periodontist and implant specialist ensures a comprehensive approach to oral health, addressing both periodontal concerns and the successful integration of dental implants. If you’re considering dental implants and have a history of periodontal disease, consult a qualified dental professional to determine the most suitable treatment plan for your needs.

                      Frequently Asked Questions

                      Yes, it is possible to get dental implants if you have periodontal disease, but careful consideration and collaboration with a dental professional are essential. The success of the implant may depend on the severity of the periodontal disease and whether it has been adequately addressed before the implantation process.

                      Implants can be considered for patients with periodontal disease, but a thorough assessment by a dental professional is crucial. The decision may hinge on the extent of the periodontal disease and whether the patient has undergone effective treatment to manage it.

                      The success rate of implants in periodontal disease varies and is influenced by factors such as the stage of periodontal disease, patient adherence to post-implant care, and overall oral health. Consultation with a dental professional will provide personalised insights into expected success rates.

                      Permanent dentures can be an option for individuals with periodontal disease, but like implants, the success may depend on the management of the gum disease. A dental professional can evaluate the suitability of permanent dentures based on the patient’s oral health.

                      The choice of the best teeth replacement for periodontal disease varies among individuals. Dental implants and permanent dentures are common options, but the ideal choice depends on factors such as oral health, personal preferences, and the extent of periodontal disease. A consultation with a dental professional will help determine the most suitable replacement option tailored to individual needs and circumstances.

                      Dr Leo Liu - profile photo

                      Dr Leo Liu

                      Dr Leo Liu is a registered Periodontist in Australia and New Zealand, specialising in periodontology and dental implant surgeries. Dr Liu holds a Master of Dental Surgery in Periodontology from the University of Hong Kong, as well as Speciality Memberships in Periodontics from the Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Edinburgh and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow. With extensive experience as a private practitioner and honorary clinical assistant professor, Dr Liu excels in evidence-based periodontal tissue regeneration, complex bone augmentation and dental implants. He actively engages with international organisations and is fluent in Cantonese and Mandarin. Dr Liu practices at the Gum & Dental Implant Centre, serving the Illawarra community.