peri·​odon·​tal | \ ˌper-ē-ō-ˈdän-tᵊl How to pronounce periodontal (audio) \

Definition of periodontal

1 : investing or surrounding a tooth
2 : of or affecting periodontal tissues or regions periodontal diseases

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Other Words from periodontal

periodontally \ ˌper-​ē-​ō-​ˈdän-​tᵊl-​ē How to pronounce periodontally (audio) \ adverb

Dentists and Periodontal Problems

In dentistry, cavities are important but they aren't the whole story; what happens to your gums is every bit as vital to your dental health. When you don't floss regularly to keep plaque from forming on your teeth and gums, the gums will slowly deteriorate. Dentists called periodontists specialize in the treatment of periodontal problems, and when the gums have broken down to the point where they can't hold the teeth in place a periodontist may need to provide dental implants, a costly and unpleasant process. But even a periodontist can't keep your gums healthy; that job is up to you.

Examples of periodontal in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Both dogs and cats need their teeth brushed and regular dental care to prevent periodontal disease. Cathy M. Rosenthal,, "Cathy Rosenthal: Dental care an important part of pet’s overall health," 31 Jan. 2020 From analyzing that, scientists identified that the hunter-gatherer was lactose intolerant, had severe periodontal disease, and had recently eaten hazelnuts and part of a mallard duck. National Geographic, "How can small clues further big discoveries?," 30 Dec. 2019 Some, however, are associated with severe periodontal disease. Kristin Romey, National Geographic, "DNA from Stone Age ‘chewing gum’ tells an incredible story," 17 Dec. 2019 Other oral bacteria species the team found in the gum can cause periodontal disease. Jim Daley, Scientific American, "Ancient “Chewing Gum” Reveals a 5,700-Year-Old Microbiome," 17 Dec. 2019 Poor oral health also increases the prevalence of periodontal diseases, said Shillpa Naavaal, the lead author of the paper and an assistant professor at the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Dentistry. Elisha Brown, New York Times, "A Smile Restored, and a Life Reclaimed," 10 Dec. 2019 Decaying teeth and periodontal disease can cause serious health problems -- including heart issues -- later in life and may be related to Alzheimer’s disease. Dear Abby,, "Dear Abby: It might be time to tie the knot if this disgusting boyfriend can clean up his act first," 17 Aug. 2019 Research demonstrates that cats, dogs, and humans share some of the same types of bacteria that cause periodontal (gum) disease. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "How Unsanitary Is It to Kiss Your Pet on the Mouth?," 2 May 2019 However, there is no scientifically sound evidence showing that contact with pets transmits this bacteria in a way that actually leads to periodontal disease in pet-owners, Dr. Villamizar-Martinez says. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "How Unsanitary Is It to Kiss Your Pet on the Mouth?," 2 May 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'periodontal.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of periodontal

1854, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of periodontal was in 1854

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Last Updated

13 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Periodontal.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Feb. 2020.

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peri·​odon·​tal | \ ˌper-ē-ō-ˈdänt-ᵊl How to pronounce periodontal (audio) \

Medical Definition of periodontal

1 : investing or surrounding a tooth
2 : of or affecting the periodontium periodontal infection

Other Words from periodontal

periodontally \ -​ᵊl-​ē How to pronounce periodontally (audio) \ adverb

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