- A Dentist is a medical practitioner who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of problems that affect teeth, gums, and the surrounding maxillofacial structure. They are also responsible for providing cleaning and preventative maintenance services, as well as instructions on the proper maintenance of teeth and gums.
- To achieve these goals, dentists routinely perform examinations, take x-ray scans, diagnose diseases, and prescribe possible treatments. They also conduct oral surgical procedures and prescribe medications for the treatment of dental problems, relief of symptoms, and prevention of infection. Due to the use of anesthetics in several dental procedures, dentists also train in the administration of general anesthesia.
Sub-Specialties of Dentistry
- Endodontics – Also known as root canal therapy, this refers to the study, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases that affect the dental pulp.
- Oral and Maxillofacial Dentist – Dentists who specialize in oral and maxillofacial dentistry fall into three different types: oral and maxillofacial pathologists, radiologists, and surgeons.
- Orthodontics – Known as one of the most popular sub-specialties of dentistry, orthodontics refer to dentists who specialize in correcting the positioning and alignment of teeth. Their main method is the use of braces to gradually guide teeth to their correct positions.
- Periodontics – This refers to the study and treatment of diseases affecting the gums. One of the most common procedures offered under periodontal dental care is the placement of dental implants, which are implanted through the gums and into the jawbone.
- Pediatric Dentistry – Formerly known as pedodontics, pediatric dentistry performs all the responsibilities and functions of the dentist to young patients.
- Prosthodontics – This is a wide-encompassing sub-specialty, with many of its specific treatment methods recognized as some of the most sought after dental treatments available. Prosthodontics refers to the placement of dentures and bridges.