Dentist Blog

By PearlFection Dentistry
May 06, 2022
Category: Uncategorized
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What is a Periodontist?

The gums are an important yet frequently overlooked part of the human anatomy.

Also known as the gingiva, this pink, fleshy tissue surrounds the teeth and covers the jawbone. The gums hold teeth securely in place while acting as a protective barrier and shock absorber. Most people don’t realize that the gums can also become an entry point for bacteria, leading to serious medical issues like pneumonia, bronchitis, and heart disease.

PearlFection Dentistry in Frederick, MD and Urbana, MD recognizes the importance of the gums and other tooth-supporting tissues to maintaining healthy smiles and overall health, with highly trained specialists on staff to diagnose and treat these critical issues. These specialists are known as Periodontists.

What is a Periodontist?

Periodontists are dentists who specialize in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of periodontal disease (gum disease), as well as the placement of dental implants. Periodontics is one of nine specialty areas recognized by the American Dental Association (ADA).

The word periodontal originated from the Greek words “peri”, meaning around, and “odon”, meaning tooth. With this definition in mind, periodontists are adept at diagnosing and treating conditions related to the gums as well as the jawbone, ligaments, and other tissues that support the teeth.

What does a Periodontist do?

Top periodontists, including Dr. Sharma and Dr. Pasieta of PearlFection Dentistry, favor a proactive approach that begins with prevention and non-surgical treatments and extends to cutting-edge restorations and surgical procedures if and when they are necessary.

Recognizing the Symptoms

Common signs of early-stage periodontal disease (Gingivitis) might be observed by a general dentist or dental hygienist during teeth cleaning. These symptoms include swollen or bleeding gums, gaps or “pockets” forming between the gum edges and teeth, gum sores, halitosis (bad breath), and unusual sensitivity to hot and/or cold liquids.

Customizing a Treatment Plan with your Periodontist

General dentists receive the training needed to recognize gum disease and treat less serious periodontal cases, but the focused education and training of a periodontist gives them a broader set of diagnostic tools and treatment options.

Once a patient has been referred to a periodontist, they will usually undergo a detailed periodontal exam. A treatment plan will be developed to control or eliminate the symptoms and stop infections from progressing into more severe periodontitis. The periodontist might also request a biopsy to test any suspicious gum sores or lesions.

Some of the many treatments and surgical procedures commonly performed by periodontists include:

  • Scaling and Root Planing – Deep teeth cleaning (scaling) with advanced dental tools is used to remove all plaque and tartar from above and below the gum line. Rough areas of the roots are then cleaned and smoothed out (planed) so that they will reattach to the teeth more easily. 
  • Pocket Reduction Surgery – Also known as flap reduction, this minor gum surgery is performed to reduce the size of bacteria-trapping pockets that have formed between the teeth and gums due to the impact of periodontal disease on the supporting tissue and bone.
  • Crown lengthening – This form of restorative gum surgery reshapes the gum tissue to expose more of the tooth surface and improve the appearance. This process is also used to avail more of the natural tooth for bonding when a crown is installed over it.
  • Frenectomy – The skills and experience of Dr. Sharma and Dr. Pasieta are utilized to perform many types of soft tissue restoration. This includes frenectomy procedures to repair the connecting tissues between the lips, tongue, and gums.

Periodontists and Dental Implants

Periodontists are trained to perform delicate surgical procedures on the jawbone and other tooth-supporting anatomy. This expertise serves them well in the placement of dental implants.

  • Dental implants typically consist of a screw-like, metal (titanium) post that is secured to the jawbone. An abutment segment attached to the implant body is used to permanently install a porcelain crown.
  • Implant crowns are strong and realistic prosthetics that form the visible portion of the tooth replacement. Crowns can also be used to cover and protect cracked natural teeth. Implant crowns are made by special dental labs based on a cast of the patent’s existing teeth.
  • Implant supported dentures are an appliance method where a series of implants is used to permanently fix complete dentures to the jawbone. Unlike removable dentures that rest on the gums, implant supported dentures provide greater convenience along with a more natural look and feel

Oral surgeons are also well-versed in the placement of dental implants. The seating of prosthetic implant crowns might benefit from the expertise of a prosthodontist. With all these valuable specialties under one roof, PearlFection Dentistry fosters a smooth and successful dental implant process with a high standard of patient satisfaction.

Becoming a Periodontist

Periodontists must complete their undergraduate (Bachelors) degree, followed by four years of dental school. From there, they will typically spend three more years in training as a periodontal resident.

During residency, the periodontist-in-training will master dozens of complex surgical procedures and treatments while studying to absorb the latest scientific and practical knowledge. It is no surprise that precision, attention to detail, and curiosity are among the personality traits found in many successful periodontists.

As board certified or board eligible specialists with a wealth of training, knowledge, and experience, Dr. Sharma and Dr. Pasieta combine an unwavering commitment to their craft with a singular dedication to the health and satisfaction of their patients. 

Choosing the Right Periodontist

Many of us establish long-term partnerships with our general dentist. They can also become our trusted advisors when we need to choose a specialist. Direct access to top periodontists who put the health and comfort of their patients first can take some of the stress and worry out of this difficult decision.

With over 47% of adults over 30 in the U.S. showing signs of gum disease, a dental office with all specialties (including periodontists) available is a wise and convenient option. The services offered by PearlFection Dentistry range from deep teeth cleaning, whitening, and orthodontics to the placement of complex implant supported dentures.

If you have concerns about the health of your teeth or gums, don't hesitate! The dentists and specialists at PearlFection Dentistry in Frederick Maryland and Urbana Maryland are here to help. Call us at (301) 663-5550 to set up a consultation. We will be happy to answer any questions that you have.

Comprehensive Dental Care clinic with 15 doctors under one roof welcomes Dr. Constanza Mondragon DMD as a Pediatric Dentist for their Frederick Maryland and Urbana Maryland locations.

By: Pearlfection Dentistry

FREDERICK, Md. – April 4, 2022 - PRLog -- PearlFection Dentistry is proud to announce that Dr. Constanza (Connie) Mondragon has joined the practice as a full-time Pediatric Dentist. Dr. Mondragon is a board-certified Pediatric Dental Specialist with a passion for bringing healthy smiles to young patients and setting them on course for a lifetime of oral health.

Dr. Mondragon is originally from Columbia, South America. Inspired by her desire to serve others, she attended dental school at El Bosque University in Bogota where she received her DDS degree in 1995. After relocating to the U.S. in 2002, she completed the International Dental Graduate program at Nova Southeastern University in Florida and earned her DMD degree in 2015. In keeping with her interest in the unique dental needs of children, she went on to receive a post-graduate degree in Pediatric Dentistry from NSU in 2017. She later traded the sunshine and beaches of Florida for the proximity of family in the D.C. Metropolitan area.

“Dr. Connie” is committed to providing a high standard of care to implement and maintain her young patients' oral health while embracing the joy they bring. As an experienced bilingual (English/Spanish) Pediatric Dentist, she hopes to encourage healthy smiles and make a difference in the lives of her patients. Her belief in ethics, caring, and dedication to children and families has been demonstrated through volunteer activities and events aimed at providing essential dental services to children in need.

Outside of the office, Dr. Mondragon enjoys spending time with family and friends. She especially enjoys playing soccer with her nephew, which requires her to stay fit through long walks, Zumba, and working out at the gym. She also enjoys traveling, dancing, going to the movies, and outdoor activities.

Dr. Mondragon will be seeing pediatric dental patients at both the Frederick Maryland and Urbana Maryland locations, utilizing the most advanced dental facilities and equipment available. This includes specialized pediatric tools and materials for imaging, cavity filling, and cleaning. Dr. Mondragon will be supported by on-staff orthodontists and other specialists at PearlFection Dentistry with pediatric expertise. This creates a convenient, worry-free environment for young patients and their families when teeth straightening, gum treatment, oral surgery, or other specialized services are necessary.

As a Pediatric Dentist, Dr. Mondragon is dedicated to the oral health of children ranging from infants to teens and young adults. This specialty oversees the important transition from primary (“baby”) teeth to secondary teeth. Pediatric Dentists are well versed in orthodontic teeth-straightening methods, extractions, and the treatment of dental injuries. They often work closely with other specialists, general dentists, and pediatricians to ensure the best course of treatment. Dr. Mondragon emphasizes oral health education for her patients, reinforcing the importance of good dental hygiene habits and regular cleanings to prevent cavities and other common dental issues. As an experienced “kid’s dentist” she is adept at making children of all ages feel safe and comfortable while providing them with the best possible care.

The entire PearlFection Dentistry staff is excited by the addition of Dr. Mondragon to the Frederick Maryland and Urbana Maryland dental offices. As a skilled, caring, and dedicated kid’s dentist who feels she only receives rewards from the little ones, she personifies the PearlFection commitment to comprehensive dental care for the entire family, including adults, seniors, and children. With all dentistry under one roof, Dr. Connie’s addition to the growing PearlFection family bolsters an exceptional team that includes General Dentists, Cosmetic Dentists, two Periodontists, two Prosthodontists, two Oral Surgeons, two Orthodontists, two Endodontists, and a highly dedicated group of Hygienists, Dental Assistants, and office personnel.

About PearlFection Dentistry: PearlFection Dentistry has been providing patients with top-quality dental treatment in a relaxed and supportive atmosphere since 1977. PearlFection maintains convenient locations in Frederick Maryland and Urbana Maryland and is owned and operated by its dentists. PearlFection is currently welcoming new patients, and most forms of dental insurance are accepted.

Call today to schedule an appointment with our friendly patient coordinator at 301-663-5550 or 301-831-8303 (Urbana), or visit our websites: or to learn more about PearlFection Dentistry or make an appointment online.

Stewart Stringer




PearlFection Dentistry in Frederick MD and Urbana MD
Welcomes Dr. Scott Pasieta – Board Certified Periodontist

Dr. Pasieta will be the 15th doctor at PearlFection Dentistry and the 2nd on staff Periodontist.

By: Pearlfection Dentistry
FREDERICK, Md. - March 22, 2022 - PRLog -- PearlFection Dentistry is proud to announce that Dr. Scott Pasieta will be joining the PearlFection dental staff as a Periodontist, effective March 28, 2022.

With over a decade of Periodontal experience, Dr. Pasieta brings a wealth of expertise in gum disease treatment, advanced cosmetic procedures, and the placement of dental implants. In addition to supporting PearlFection Dentistry patients with non-surgical root planing and scaling treatments to clean and repair damaged tissue, Dr. Pasieta will also be using his expertise to perform dental implant surgery, crown lengthening, gum recontouring, and pocket reduction procedures.

After completing his graduate studies at the University of Maryland Dental School, Dr. Pasieta went on to earn his certificate in Periodontics from the Naval Postgraduate Dental School in Bethesda, Maryland. As a Navy Periodontist, Dr. Pasieta was afforded the opportunity to practice and travel all over the world, gaining valuable personal and professional experience along the way. While in Hawaii, he established a private Periodontic practice and served as an attending Clinical Periodontics faculty member for the New York University Waikiki Health Clinic. This breadth of experience has contributed to Dr. Pasieta’s impressive skill set and focus on exceptional patient care.

Dr. Pasieta is a dual board-certified Periodontist, accredited by the American Board of Periodontology in the areas of Periodontology and Implant Dentistry and a Diplomate of the International Congress of Oral Implantologists. The ICOI is the world’s largest dental implant organization and the largest provider of continuing dental implant education. Dr. Pasieta is also an active member of the American Academy of Periodontology and the American Dental Association.

Determining the best dentist, specialist(s), and support staff to meet the unique needs of each patient is essential for ensuring an optimized outcome. The addition Dr. Pasieta compliments the PearlFection commitment to comprehensive dental care with all dentistry under one roof. Dr. Pasieta will join existing Periodontist Dr. Atul Sharma to become the second Periodontist in the Frederick Maryland office. These highly qualified specialists make use of the most advanced facilities, equipment, and tools available for gum surgery and implantology, with the ultimate goal of ensuring ongoing oral health and wellness.

When not in the office caring for his patients, Dr. Pasieta enjoys spending time with his family, traveling, cooking, attending the theater, and watching sports. "I am extremely excited to join the incredible team at PearlFection Dentistry," says Dr. Pasieta. "I look forward to making wonderful connections with my patients while treating them like family."
As a Periodontist, Dr. Pasieta specializes in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of inflammatory diseases that affect the gums and other tooth-supporting tissues. Periodontists treat cases ranging from mild gingivitis to severe gum infections and other conditions requiring aggressive periodontal therapy or surgical intervention, including the placement of dental implants.

The PearlFection Dentistry staff looks forward to the addition of Dr. Pasieta to the growing team of dentists and specialists. With all dentistry under one roof ranging from cleaning, teeth whitening, and orthodontics to complex implant-supported dentures such as restorative all-on four dentures, the skills Dr. Pasieta brings to the table as an experienced, dual board-certified Periodontist expand and enhance the PearlFection Dental portfolio of services.

About PearlFection Dentistry: PearlFection Dentistry ( has been meeting the comprehensive dental care needs of the Frederick Maryland community since 1977. Along with an additional full-service dental office located in Urbana Maryland, they strive to ensure patients receive top-quality dental treatment while enjoying a relaxed and supportive atmosphere. With 15 doctors now on staff in various specialties including pediatrics, cosmetic treatment, and everything in between, you'll be confident your oral hygiene is always in the very best hands. Call today to schedule your appointment with our friendly patient coordinator at (301) 663-5550.

Skipping your daily or nightly teeth brushing regime may seem like an innocent thing to do, however, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Your oral hygiene affects your overall health and if you have a history of certain health issues in your family, your oral health shouldn’t be overlooked.

Tooth decay is more than a cosmetic issue, it is an indicator your gums aren’t healthy. This article will review the most recent studies found linking oral hygiene to physical health, as well as an inside look into more severe cases, and tips on how you can keep your oral health in top condition.

How Oral Hygiene Affects Physical Health 2022

How are Oral Health and Physical Health Connected?

Like every aspect of your physical body, your mouth contains many different bacterias. Because your mouth is the starting point for your digestive and respiratory systems some bacteria can cause diseases.

Paired with your body’s natural defenses having a healthy oral hygiene regimen will stop the harmful bacteria from spreading. Brushing your teeth and flossing are preventative measures that keep these bacteria under control in less than 6 minutes per day.

What Health Conditions does Oral Hygiene affect?

There are many conditions linked to your oral health, some of which include:

  • Respiratory Infections - Your mouth is the entry point for your respiratory system. As air is pulled through your mouth to your lungs if harmful bacteria isn’t stopped before it goes straight to your lungs. The linked health concerns are COPD, pneumonia, and bronchitis.
  • Cardiovascular Disease - Inflamed gums can be from periodontal disease, the bacteria that cause this can get into your bloodstream and cause your arteries to build up with plaque. These lead to blood flow issues, heart blockages, which increase the likelihood of other severe health problems like a heart attack.

Other cardiovascular concerns include hypertension, increased risk for strokes, and often fatal endocarditis.

  • Cancer - Poor oral health has been linked to pancreatic cancer, kidney cancer, and blood cancers. Not to mention the oral and throat cancers that are more common in those who use tobacco products.

If you are battling cancer right now, here are some measures to take to ensure your oral hygiene is working with your treatment.

  • Kidney Disease - If you have gum disease you are more likely to develop chronic kidney disease. These affect not only the kidneys, but your heart, blood pressure, and bones as well. These diseases can be fatal, even more so if it turns into cardiovascular disease or kidney failure.
  • Infertility - There is a link between infertility in women and poor oral hygiene. Women who have gum disease can take a longer time to conceive compared to those in good oral health.
  • Pregnancy Complications - If you are expecting oral hygiene is vital for the health of not on you, but your baby as well. Tooth decay can lead to gum disease which can lead to many more severe health concerns.

According to the CDC 60 - 75% of expecting mothers have gingivitis, an early warning sign for periodontal disease.

Can Health Affect my Oral Health Too?

Yes, different medical diagnoses are linked to oral health issues.

  • Diabetes - Patients who have diabetes are at a higher risk for developing periodontal disease. This disease leads to heart complications including plaque build-ups and calcification, blood cancers, and much more.
  • Dementia - Your mouth and brain are very close to each other in your body. Studies suggest the bacteria that causes gum disease is linked to Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia.

What is Periodontal Disease?

Because periodontal disease is linked to so many of these health issues, you must understand what it is. Periodontal disease, otherwise known as perio or periodontitis, is an inflammation or infection in your gums.

It can easily be identified by multiple factors. The gums will be raised and curved on the parts where they touch your teeth. These are called pockets, these pockets are filled with the perio infection. Another identifier is bad breath, if you try to use mouthwash but cannot get that minty fresh smell you want, this could be an indicator of a more serious matter.

Lastly, if you brush your teeth and your gums bleed, this is either a sign of brushing too hard or gingivitis. Healthy gums do not bleed. Gingivitis is the beginning stage of periodontal disease. If you catch gingivitis at an early stage is it possible to be reversed before it turns into perio.

When you have periodontitis instead of getting a normal dental cleaning you have to go to a dental specialist called a periodontist. This doctor measures pockets in your gums to see how deep the infection has spread. Once the severity has been established your doctor does what is referred to as “deep cleaning.”

This cleaning consists of separating your gum from your tooth so they can go inside to scrape away the infection, plaque, and tartar that has built up underneath the gums.

Tips for Good Oral Hygiene

Good oral health isn’t hard to accomplish. You can complete the preventative measures in less time than it takes you to finish a cup of coffee.

  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day for only 2 minutes each. Brush in circular motions.
  • Use a soft-bristled brush and replace it every 3 months or sooner if the edges start to fray.
  • Floss your teeth daily.
  • Use mouthwash to get rid of any particles left behind after brushing and flossing.
  • Limit sugary foods and drinks.
  • Eat healthy foods.
  • Avoid tobacco products of all kinds.


Your oral hygiene and physical health are directly connected. The best way to prevent your body from falling ill is by taking preventative measures. Simply follow the advice provided by your dental specialist to prevent tooth decay.

Brush your teeth twice a day for 2 minutes. Once in the morning and once before bed. These small steps will help you get and keep healthy gums as well as your teeth for as long as possible.

February 18, 2022
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Snoring  

Treating sleep apnea can help you avoid serious health complications. Unfortunately, sleep apnea treatment methods aren't always so comfortable. If your continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine keeps you up at night, your Urbana, MD, dentist at PearlFection Dentistry offers a more pleasant sleep apnea treatment.

Why it's important to treat sleep apnea

If you've tried and failed to adjust to a CPAP machine, you may be reluctant to try another type of treatment. Unfortunately, if you don't treat your sleep condition, you might be more likely to develop a variety of serious health conditions, including:

  • Heart attack
  • Heart disease
  • Irregular heartbeats
  • High blood pressure
  • Stroke
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Depression
  • Weight gain

In addition, sleep apnea can make you feel exhausted and irritable during the day and may even increase your risk of a car accident. Is loud snoring one of your sleep apnea symptoms? Your spouse, partner, family, or roommate will probably sleep easier if you can get your snoring under control with sleep apnea treatment.

How dentists treat sleep apnea

Sleep apnea can occur if your tongue falls back against your throat while you sleep. If this happens, airflow to your lungs decreases or stops completely. In fact, you can have hundreds of breathing pauses every night, each lasting several seconds. Over time, the cumulative effects of these pauses disrupt your sleep and deprive your brain of oxygen, increasing your risk of health consequences.

Although the CPAP machine is an effective way to treat sleep apnea, you may decide to stop using the machine if you find the mask uncomfortable or if the noise disrupts your sleep. Fortunately, your dentist offers a low-tech treatment option that can help you control your symptoms.

The oral appliance, worn while you sleep, repositions your tongue and moves your jaw forward, preventing your tongue from blocking your airway. During your visit to the Urbana, MD, dental office, your dentist will fit you with your custom-made appliance. Oral appliances are not only comfortable and quiet but don't require electricity or take up too much room in your luggage while you're traveling.

Are you ready to try a new sleep apnea treatment? Call your dentist at PearlFection Dentistry in Urbana, MD, at (301) 831-8303 to schedule your appointment.

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