What Are the Different Types of Dental Specialists?

Your teeth play an essential role in your life. They help you talk, chew, smile, and even shape your face. But, like any other part of your body, your teeth also require regular checkups. And this is why you need to visit dental specialists like NuSmyle Dental- Logan Dentist. Most people often assume that a dentist is a dentist. Well, that isn’t entirely true. The dental industry has several types of specialists who play a particular role in your oral care.

These specialists receive additional training that’s beyond the general dentistry degree they acquire. Here’s a list of five different dental specialties and their responsibilities.

1. Endodontist

An Endodontist is a specialist commonly referred to as a root canal specialist. Their primary role is to treat infected, sick, inflamed, or dead teeth nerves that cause excruciating pain. Besides a dental degree, an endodontist also has an additional two years or more in dental training. The additional training enables them to focus on performing root canal treatments, diagnosing tooth pain, and performing other procedures.

In most cases, with the proper endodontic treatment, an endodontist can save a diseased tooth. Apart from handling root canal treatments, an endodontist specialist can address traumatic dental injuries and place implants. Their treatment goal is to ensure they help save your teeth whenever possible, but they will determine the best course of action depending on the case if that’s not possible.

2. Orthodontist

This oral health care provider specializes in the diagnosis, interception, and treatment of malocclusions. Malocclusions are also referred to as bad bites. They often result from crowded teeth, missing teeth, misaligned jaws, or excess teeth. By treating these bad bites, an orthodontist transforms an unattractive smile into a beautiful one. A healthy bite also allows you to chew, speak, and eat properly.

Apart from attending dental school, an orthodontist also attends orthodontic school. Upon graduating, they spend two or three years in a residency program. Unlike previous years, orthodontists today can treat people of all ages and not just children. They have also integrated technology in some of their treatment options available, like Invisalign implants.

3. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon

An oral and maxillofacial surgeon is a specialist that treats a wide range of defects, injuries, and diseases in the jaws, head, neck, and the soft and hard tissues of your maxillofacial and oral region. These specialists are also trained to provide care and administer anesthesia in an office setting. Some problems they can treat include misaligned jaws, wisdom teeth, cysts in your mouth and jaw, and tumors.

They can also perform dental implant surgery. Besides undergoing undergraduate study, an oral and maxillofacial surgeon also undergoes four years of dental surgery. They also go through four to six years of residency training. The typical dental procedure oral surgeons are known for worldwide is cleft palate or cleft lip surgery.

4. Periodontist

A periodontist is a specialist who focuses on diagnosing, preventing, and treating gum disease. In addition, these specialists help patients manage the signs of advanced gum problems like inflammation. This type of inflammation occurs when the area around your teeth becomes infected.

When spotted earlier, controlling this infection becomes easier. However, for advanced gum diseases, extensive treatment is required. This is where you have to see a periodontist. Like any other specialist, a periodontist has gone through dental school. They, however, have to go through a three-year periodontics residency and sit for a certification exam before becoming a fully-fledged periodontist.

5. Pediatric Dentist

This dental care specialist is dedicated to providing oral health services to children from infancy through their teen years. These dentists have the qualifications and experience to care for children’s gums, teeth, and mouth throughout the different childhood stages. Children get quite anxious whenever they visit a dentist. A pediatric dentist helps them feel safe and comfortable during the entire visit, as they know how to treat children.

Apart from dental school, a pediatric dentist also has two additional years in residency. Their residency program allows them to interact with children, teens, infants, and children with special needs. Some of the dental services they offer include:

  • Infant oral exams
  • Preventive dental care
  • Cavity or defects repair
  • Diagnosing oral conditions
  • Managing gum diseases
  • Dental injury care

When it comes to dental specialists, the list is endless. If your general dentist ever refers you to a dental specialist, you now have an idea of where you can find the help you need. You also get to receive the right treatment for your oral condition.