When you visit a periodontist's clinic, you should expect to be thoroughly examined. You'll be asked to provide information about your overall health, including your medical history, periodontal disease, and dental history. Your periodontist will also inspect your jaw joints and other structures within your mouth and throat. He or she will also measure the depth of your gum pockets, which should be at least three millimeters deep in healthy people. Deeper pockets indicate periodontal disease. Your periodontist may also take an X-ray to determine the extent of your problem. In addition to routine procedures, a periodontist can perform more advanced procedures for your teeth. Some periodontists offer surgical procedures to help restore your healthy teeth and gums. Some may specialize in dental implants, while others will focus on non-surgical treatments. Ask your potential periodontist whether they have experience performing the procedures you need. Also, be sure to ask if you can receive sedation before your treatment. Periodontitis is a serious disease that occurs when the gums no longer keep the teeth in place. Without treatment, this disease will cause the gums to recede, forming an infected pocket underneath. This infection weakens the immune system and may lead to bone and tissue breakdown. If left untreated, teeth may even fall out or require extraction.