William E. Mason, D.D.S., M.S., Periodontics - Dental Implants
FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions

Why is my dentist referring me to a periodontist?
How is periodontal disease treated?

How painful is periodontal treatment? 

At my first visit, what will the doctor do?

How much will my treatment cost and is it covered by my insurance?

What will happen if I don't have my periodontal disease treated?

What is the role of my general dentist?

What happens after my periodontal treatment is complete?


Why is my dentist referring me to a periodontist?

General dentists are trained to diagnose and treat early periodontal disease. The fact that you have been referred means that your dentist feels you would benefit from the advanced training that a specialist receives. Feel fortunate that your dentist is able to make the diagnosis since periodontal disease usually causes no symptoms or discomfort.

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How is periodontal disease treated?

Peridontal health should be achieved in the least invasive, cost effective manner. It is most commonly treated through a non-surgical periodontal procedure called scaling and root planing. The aim of treatment is setting your body up to heal itself.


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How painful is periodontal treatment?

Everyone at our office is committed to making your treatment as comfortable as possible. A numbing agent is used for all procedures so that dull pressure is the only sensation you are aware of. At no time will there be any pain associated with your treatment. There are also means by which any anxiety can be easily controlled with oral medication. This will be addressed at your first visit as well.


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At my first visit, what will the doctor do?

During your first visit, your medical and dental history will be reviewed and then you will be given a thorough periodontal examination. Any additional x-rays will be taken, if needed, for an accurate diagnosis to be made. After the examination has been completed we will explain our findings and treatment recommendations. All questions that you may have will be answered before you leave the office that day. Our goal is to help you understand your condition, its severity and what you can expect from your treatment.


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How much will my treatment cost and is it covered by my insurance?

The cost of your treatment will depend on the severity of your condition and extensiveness of your treatment. Each patient is evaluated and a treatment plan developed on an individual basis. Therefore, it is not possible to give an average cost. If you have dental insurance, it will definitely help cover some, possibly most, of the cost of your treatment. Your dental insurance benefit will be affected by the deductible, total amount of benefit available per year and how much of your benefit has already been used. My staff will be in contact with your dental insurance carrier to clarify your coverage and review this with you at your initial visit. For treatment procedures, which involve more than your insurance provides, payment options are available.


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What will happen if I don't have my periodontal disease treated?

Periodontal disease slowly destroys the gumline and bone support for the teeth. While this rarely hurts initially, it eventually results in the teeth loosening and then being lost. The ongoing infection of periodontal disease has recently been linked to the other systemic medical conditions, including heart disease, heart attack, stroke and premature low birthweight infants.


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What is the role of my general dentist?

Your general dentist is the most important member of your dental health care team. He/she is still in charge of your overall treatment. Your general dentist is made aware of our initial findings and treatment plan and is kept informed as to your progress through your treatment here. We will work closely together to ensure the best possible result for your treatment.


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What happens after my periodontal treatment is complete?

After your initial scaling and root planing, Dr. Mason will reevaluate your condition. Most patients do not require further active treatment, only continued, routine cleanings. If scaling and root planing does not result in healthy gums, then surgical options are available.

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