Periodontal maintenance is a frequent schedule of cleanings that includes alternating these appointments with a periodontist and a general dentist. Since there is a genetic component to periodontal disease, people treated for periodontal disease are more likely to have periodontal problems in the future. The best way to avoid future problems is to continue treatment for periodontitis through periodontal maintenance. The goal of periodontal maintenance is to maintain the health of your gums so the future loss of teeth is minimized or eliminated. The frequency of periodontal maintenance is individualized for each person but usually involves alternating every three months between a periodontist and your general dentist for periodontal maintenance appointments. Periodontal maintenance is the most important and least expensive part of periodontal treatment.
Periodontal maintenance is usually covered by most insurance plans after periodontal treatment is completed. Some insurance plans will cover periodontal maintenance for a limited amount of time following treatment. Just because dental insurance companies may not always cover a procedure does not mean it is not necessary for long-term success. Each dental plan is different, so check with your insurance company for our plan allowances. The dental code used for periodontal maintenance is D4910 and may be needed.
The American Dental Association recommends periodontal maintenance after active periodontal treatment is completed for the life of the dentition. This is the recommendation that is followed when there are multiple areas of the mouth requiring periodontal surgery for periodontitis. Periodontal maintenance is individualized for each person, so if there is one site in the mouth, periodontal maintenance may not always be required forever.
Periodontal maintenance is a therapeutic (treatment) procedure. It is part of a program to continue controlling the bacteria in the mouth from destroying the bone supporting the teeth. It is a continuation of treatment and is part of the treatment for the disease periodontitis. Most periodontal offices alternate periodontal maintenance appointments with your general dentist so the periodontist can continue to treat periodontitis with periodontal maintenance appointments, and your general dentist can detect dental decay (cavities).
Regular cleaning is a preventive procedure. Regular cleaning of the teeth is not a treatment for a disease. It is to prevent you from developing a condition called periodontitis - bone loss around teeth.