Here’s a situation for you: Say an accident occurs and several of your teeth get knocked out. You schedule an emergency dental visit for the next day.
After a few minutes in the chair, your dentist tells you you’ll need to visit a prosthodontist. Understandably, you have no clue what they’re referring to. It sounds like some kind of long-forgotten dinosaur!
Don’t worry, prosthodontists aren’t anything to fear. Keep reading as we explain what a prosthodontist can do and when you’ll need to procure their services.
What is a Prosthodontist?
A prosthodontist is a type of dentist specialist focusing on patients with multiple missing or damaged teeth. Often, these patients would require extensive care and may need serious treatments such as tooth reconstruction, or even full-mouth reconstruction.
It’s sort of like the difference between an orthodontist and a dentist. Orthodontists are doctors who specialize in certain fields, while dentists, who still do important work, tend to focus on generalized issues.
Prosthodontists undergo the same core dental training your family dentist has. With that said, they also undergo hours of specialized training, as well as years of hands-on training. So rest assured, you’re in good hands.
Can’t a Dentist Repair Your Teeth?
This is a fair question! And, in short, yes. Your dentist should be more than capable of helping with things like dental implant crowns or fixing a missing tooth.
However, they’ll recommend seeing a specialist if the issue requires special care, like requiring extensive surgery around the jaw or mouth. Furthermore, if you have more than a missing tooth or two, they’ll likely send you to a specialist.
To summarize, a dentist is more of a generalist, focusing on one-off issues and general oral health, while a prosthodontist deals with advanced dental restorations.
But if you already have plans to see your dentist, don’t cancel that appointment yet. In most instances, you’ll need a referral to see a prosthodontist. This is even recommended under American Dental Association guidelines.
Other Ways a Prosthodontist Can Help
Prosthodontists offer more than solutions for tooth reconstruction, however. They’re also capable of treating things like sleep apnea, a cleft palate, temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ), and more.
They can even install dental veneers and crowns, too.
That’s the tip of the iceberg, though, as there are so many other services offered by prosthodontists. Check out this article to learn about these Prosthodontic solutions and more!
If it involves your jaw or tooth structure, or hours-long oral surgeries, a prosthodontist can more than likely help.
Find Your Smile Again
If you’re confused, don’t worry. Let’s take a second to do a quick recap of what we’ve learned!
A prosthodontist is a dental specialist focusing on the structure of a patient’s jaw. They can also help with tooth reconstruction, dental implants, and more. However, you’ll likely need to go through your general dentist beforehand.
We hope you’ve found this article helpful. For more tips on keeping your smile bright, be sure to check back with our blog!