Prosthodontics are a form of dental prosthetics. It is within the prosthetic dentistry field and one of nine specialities listed by the American Dental Association as well as the Royal Australasian College of Dental Surgeons and the Royal College of Dentists of Canada. In prosthodontics, dentists work to diagnose, treat, and maintain a good working condition for patients who are missing teeth or do not have enough substance in their oral facial tissues.
Required Education for Prosthodontics
To train for work in prosthodontics, a dentist must specialize in the aesthetic replacement of teeth. In other words, the dentist must be trained to create a mouth that looks good for their patients not just functions well. They also must go through specialization training for three to four years after dentistry school.
There are a number of different conditions that are related to prosthodontics: bisphosphonate-associated osteonecrosis of the jaw, bruxism, edentulism, occlusal trauma, and temporomandibular joint disorder. There are also a number of differetnt treatment modalities depending on the practitioner. These include: Akers’ clasp, amalgam, bridge, centric relation, crown, crown lengthening, crown-to-root ratio, curve of spree, dental surgery, dentures, fixed prosthodontics, inlays and onlays, and removable partial denture.
Finding the Right Prosthodontist
Prosthodontic work takes partial teeth, no teeth, and damaged facial tissue to create a functional and cosmetically pleasing mouth again. If you have serious damage, a prosthodontist can do work that offers a pretty smile rather than just a functional mouth. Therefore, for serious work, a dentist will often review their patients to a prosthodontist dentist. If your dentist does not, ask for a referral. Most dentists are not qualified to do this kind of work (or at least not well). However, your family dentist is always the best point of reference when it comes to finding referrals to a prosthodontist and when it comes to diagnosing your condition.