How does my dentist diagnose periodontal disease?

During a periodontal exam, your dentist or periodontist typically checks your:

  • Gums: for bleeding, swelling, firmness, and measurement of the periodontal pockets (the space between the gum line and the attachment to the bone; the larger and deeper the pocket, the more severe the disease)
  • Teeth: for movement and sensitivity
  • Bite: for proper teeth alignment
  • Jawbone: (uses X-rays) to help detect the breakdown of bone surrounding your teeth

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