The thought of a dentist’s office makes me sweat a little. And if it’s possible, sitting in that dentist’s chair makes my teeth sweat too. It’s not an uncommon attitude or even an uncommon fear. But for many people, it’s proven to be an obstacle when it comes to maintaining good oral health. In particular, when a condition inside the mouth has escalated to a level that requires professional intervention.
I first heard the term “periodontist” when my gums had gotten to the point of needing specialized treatment. A periodontist specializes in the care of the tissue and bone inside our mouths. For a number of reasons, I found myself with a periodontal disease – known as gum disease – that required professional attention. A friend (who happens to be a dentist) gave me the number for the office she sends all of her referrals to, Periodontal Associates.
What I considered an unlucky situation at the time, today I see as a lucky break. The Periodontal Associates team gave me an experience that honestly changed the way I think about and care for my teeth and gums. Their attention and service went above and beyond anything I could possibly have hoped for – I’ve been going to them for all my oral care ever since!
From the initial call to book the appointment, to my nervous (and slightly sweaty) arrival at the front desk, I felt important and welcomed by the staff. The receptionist gave me a warm greeting, treated me courteously, and I did not have to wait any longer than my scheduled time to be ushered in. I found the office to be an immaculate and inviting space, up until I saw the very type of dentist-chair that makes my teeth sweat.
Thankfully, as anyone who has been to Periodontal Associates knows, the hygienist is amazing! She could tell I was uncomfortable and knew exactly what to do to put me at ease. Her interactions kept me distracted enough to relax (at least a bit) and her light and professional demeanor calmed my nerves (as much as can be expected). While she was completing my scaling and root planing, she educated me on the causes for my periodontal issues – the gum disease had created pockets in my tissues and it was starting to affect the integrity of my teeth and surrounding bone.
The periodontist, Dr. Gangbar, took the time to explain the procedures we would go through to get a hold of my condition and get back on the road to healthy gums and teeth. His expertise was evident in his careful handling and explanation of my maintenance and prevention action plan – brushing, flossing, rinsing, awareness, and check ups. By working with me and treating me as an integral part of the team, Periodontal Associates gave me the tools I needed to take charge of my own oral care and they showed me how to use those tools with conviction.
Trust goes a long way. Our teeth are an investment, both medically and financially. I never realised that finding a professional I could trust would be an important part of making my oral care more effective and stress-free. But there you have it – Periodontal Associates became a team I knew I could continue to learn from and trust with my very valuable investment.
My ultimate goal – as was my periodontist’s – was to avoid tooth loss through the most conservative means possible. If our first plan of action – root planing, scaling, and vigorous at-home care – did not rectify my periodontal disease, we discussed the option of osseous surgery, which is a procedure to reverse damage caused by pockets in the gum tissue. Although, the surgery route was initially the option I was most nervous about, once Dr. Gangbar explained the frequency with which the procedure is performed and the successes afforded to us by using that intervention tool, I was better prepared to face the prospect with confidence. With all the necessary knowledge and options laid out, and my action plan in place, we scheduled a follow up appointment to monitor the progress and take our remaining steps towards oral health. .
And I can tell you, for the first time, I was not apprehensive about going to an appointment for my mouth – instead, I felt determined and empowered.
That appointment was over two years ago now. With a lot of hard work and vigilance (and a touch of luck), I avoided osseous surgery and am the proud keeper of a very happy and healthy set of teeth and gums. I still see the team for all my regular check ups, and they’re still as welcoming and helpful as the first time I stepped foot in their office. I’ve become a big advocate for proper oral care and the prevention of periodontal disease. And like my friend before me, I too refer anyone I know to Periodontal Associates with confidence. Their service is unmatched in my experience, and their transformative impact on my oral health is obvious in my unabashedly big, bright smile.
Thanks for all of your help and care!