A periodontist is a dentist who specializes in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of periodontal disease or diseases of the gums which can destroy the bone which supports the teeth. Periodontists also place dental implants in areas where teeth are missing. Periodontists receive extensive training in these areas, including three additional years of education beyond dental school. They are familiar with the latest techniques for diagnosing and treating periodontal disease, and are also trained in performing cosmetic periodontal procedures.
More information about the specialty of periodontics and specific procedures can be found at the website of the American Academy of Periodontology. This is an excellent resource for patients.