What is the difference between a periodontist and a prosthodontist?

Two dental specialties are periodontics and prosthodontics, which sound similar but are very different. Simply put, periodontists deal with the tissues that surround teeth, and prosthodontists make and place dentures, bridges, and similar appliances for people who have missing teeth. A periodontist focuses on treating the structures that support the teeth and placing dental implants. We have experience with gum disease, which is often the underlying cause of unhealthy or missing teeth.

A periodontist is a dentist who specializes in the soft tissues of the mouth and the underlying jaw that supports the teeth. A dentist must first graduate from an accredited dental school before completing an additional three years of study within a residency training program in periodontics, in order to qualify as a periodontist. In addition to these differences, prosthodontists and periodontists are also certified at two different boards. Periodontists and prosthodontists work indoors in similar environments and may be asked to review x-rays and explain treatment options to their patients.

Aspiring periodontists and prosthodontists may be interested in other dental specialties, such as being an orthodontist. While some general dentists perform cosmetic and restorative dentistry, there is a significantly different level of skill and experience between a general dentist and a prosthodontist.