Cosmetic Dentists – Understanding the Training Requirements to Be a Specialist

You generally hear about the Atlanta cosmetic dentistry successes, but you do not hear about the opponents. As reported by the TV show 20/20 … So while veneers can do wonders to brighten your smile and your life, a skilled dentist is key. But do not rely solely on ads when making that choice because any dentist can claim he or she is a cosmetic specialist. There is no Georgia certification needed for dentists to call themselves an Atlanta cosmetic dentist and the American Dental Association (ADA) does not recognize " cosmetic dentistry" as a specialty because if your teeth fail (ie dental disaster) pretty teeth that do not function can do more harm than good. Some "clubs" or associations have been formed to try and lend credibility to the term "cosmetic dentist" but mostly they are just for marketing. Luckily there is an ADA specialty that recognizes true advanced training. A Prosthodontist is an Atlanta dentist who is committed to the aesthetic restoration of teeth including bridges, crowns / caps, dental implants, dentures, partial dentures, teeth whitening and veneers. Few people have ever heard of a Prosthodontist but before you spend thousands of dollars to have a beautiful smile, believe me, you want your teeth to function properly as well look beautiful so be sure to look for a good Prosthodontist. In fact the American College of Prosthodontists answers the question this way:

Is a prosthodontist different from a "cosmetic dentist"?

The American Dental Association recognizes nine dental specialties, and the ADA does not include "cosmetic dentistry" as a specialty. Prosthodontists receive extensive training and experience in dental esthetics and cosmetics during their graduate programs which currently last three years. Many cosmetic dentists receive training during seminars or a series of courses, but this training is usually limited to weekend or possibly week-long courses.

As for those enticing after pictures you might see on the walls or in albums in the dentist's office, it turns out they can be very easy to come by. So too can the clubs and associations so do not be fooled by all the claims. Do your research and find a good Prosthodontist.

Prosthodontists are Specialists in Dentistry

A Prosthodontist is a dentist who is committed to the esthetic restoration of teeth including bridges, crowns / caps, dental implants, dentures, partial denture, teeth whitening and veneers. The vast majority of dentists are general dentists without ADA recognized advanced specialty training. Less than 100 dentists per year are chosen and accepted into Prosthodontic programs across the nation. The American College of Prosthodontists (ACP) ensures standards are maintained in the specialist field. Becoming a Prosthodontist requires an additional 3 years of specialty training after completing a general dentist degree. Training consists of rigorous preparation in head and neck anatomy, materials science, esthetics, function and occlusion (bite). Due to this extensive training, prosthodontists are frequently called upon to treat complex cosmetic cases, full mouth rehabilitation and reconstructive dentistry, restoration of congenital malformations (cleft lip and palate, mouth deformations), TMJ related disorders, and victims of trauma or accidents.