Do Prosthodontists Need to Go to Medical School?

Prosthodontists require a doctorate from dental school, a dental license, and three years of residency training. They must also obtain a specialty certification in prosthodontics. After graduating from dental school, aspiring prosthodontists must complete additional education and residency. They can earn a master's degree in science, a certificate, or a doctorate in prosthodontics.

A master's degree and certification program take three years to complete, while a doctorate will take five to seven years. This program is designed to help students achieve clinical excellence in prosthodontics, particularly in the field of digital dental technology. Students will receive excellent support from faculty and staff, with access to cutting-edge technology such as digital scanners, design software, and an in-house milling center. The Postdoctoral Prosthodontics Program prepares the licensed dentist to practice the specialty of prosthodontics in a private practice, in the academic world, or both.

The three-year course of study covers the advanced theory and practice of prosthodontics (including complete and removable prosthodontics, fixed prosthodontics, implant prosthodontics, and maxillofacial prosthesis), as well as basic and applied sciences. The program also provides clinical and didactic training in implant surgery. Although strongly oriented to clinical dentistry with an emphasis on diagnosis, treatment planning, and therapeutic application, the program also has a research component and opportunities to assist in the instruction of undergraduate dental students. The program leads to a master's degree in prosthodontics and is approved by the Dental Accreditation Commission.

Licensed dentists and prosthodontists can complete the online certificate or master's degree in orofacial pain through the University of Southern California. Prosthodontists usually work in dental clinics, although some may work in dental laboratories or dental hospitals. The program is beneficial for prosthodontists because it is based on their existing education and training. The program has thirty full- and part-time trained prosthodontists as clinical professors, plus numerous outstanding academics as visiting professors.

Candidates must apply for board certification and then take a series of exams to earn the title of board-certified prosthodontist. To become a prosthodontist, one must earn a bachelor's degree, complete dental school, and complete a prosthodontic education or residency program. Typical procedures performed by prosthodontists include crowns, bridges, dental implants, dentures, and veneers. It may take 11 to 13 years of education after high school to become a prosthodontist.

Although not required, it is an industry standard for prosthodontists to obtain board certification through the American Board of Prosthodontics. Graduates of the three-year residency in prosthodontics at the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry have the skills needed to excel as prosthodontists. While some of these procedures may be performed by a standard dentist, prosthodontists have specialized education and experience in more complicated cases. The primary goal of a prosthodontist is to restore the use, appearance, and comfort of a patient's teeth using artificial materials.