Dental Specialists

If you require a dental treatment or procedure, you’ll need to know what type of dentist to visit. This is because the field of dentistry is actually divided into several specialties. Of course, someone who specializes in something tends to be better at that one thing than someone who is more of a generalist.

General dentists are the backbone of dentistry, making up about 80% of all dental practitioners. Sometimes, your general dentist may refer you to a specialist. Some of the more common dental specialists include:

  • Oral and maxillofacial surgeon
  • Periodontist
  • Endodontist
  • Prosthodontist
  • Pediatric dentist
  • Orthodontist

Let’s have a look at the different dental specialties and what types of conditions they treat:

What is an oral and maxillofacial surgeon (OMS)? 

An oral and maxillofacial surgeon deals with the diagnosis and treatment of injuries, diseases, and defects found in the neck, head, face, jaws, and soft tissues around the oral and maxillofacial area.

Problems treated by oral and maxillofacial surgeons include:

  • Wisdom teeth extraction
  • Misaligned jaws
  • Cysts and tumors of the mouth and jaw
  • Performance of dental implant surgery 

What is a periodontist? 

Periodontists are trained to prevent, diagnose, and treat diseases related to structures that support the teeth. They also specialize in the overall health, aesthetics, and functions of tissue structure.

Periodontists are heavily involved in treating periodontal disease.

Why is your dentist referring you to a periodontist? 

In most cases, your dentist would refer you to a periodontist if you are suffering from severe periodontal disease, or periodontitis. 

What is an endodontist?

Endodontics is a dental specialty dealing with the dental pulp, as well as the tissues, nerves, and blood vessels around a tooth root. 

If your regular dentist has referred you to an endodontist, you most likely need a root canal procedure. While general dentists perform root canal procedures twice a week on average, endodontists perform an average of 25 per week.

What is a prosthodontist?

A prosthodontist is a dental specialist whose primary role is diagnosing and restoring missing or damaged oral tissues so that they function properly.

The focus of a prosthodontist is on dental restorations for missing, decayed, or damaged teeth. 

What is a pediatric dentist?

Pediatric dentists provide many of the same services as general dentists, only they have received specialized training in dealing with young children, as well as those with physical or mental challenges. 

Pediatric dentists also provide resources and treatments for very young children, such as how to clean teeth and providing pediatric dental sealants to prevent tooth decay.

What is an orthodontist? 

If you have crooked teeth or a bad bite, you’re probably going to be dealing with an orthodontist sooner or later. This specialist focuses on straightening teeth using treatments like braces, space maintainers, pallet expanders, and clear aligners like Invisalign.

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 Still unsure about which dental specialist can help you with your dental problem? Please contact our dental office for more information or to schedule a consultation at any time.

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