What Are the Nine Officially Dental Specialties Recognized in North America?
Did you know that there are nine dentistry specialties in the medical professions of North America? Yes, the dentistry field is actually much larger than you probably know. Perhaps you are familiar with your everyday dentist and, maybe, an orthodontist, but there are seven more professional dentistry fields, each with their own specialties.
Each of these specialties, of course, carries its own special education requirements too. Just as a medical student could specialize in anesthesiology or radiology, so could a Des Cedres Dental Clinic professional dentistry student study any one of these nine recognized specialties in the United States and Canada.
The Nine Dental Specialties of North America
Here are the nine officially recognized dental specialties studied in North America:
- DentalPublic Health—the study of dentistry-related epidemiology and how it relates to social health policies
- Endodontics—the study of all diseases specifically related to the dental pulp with a focus mostly on root canal therapy
- Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology—the study, diagnosis, and treatment, of the oral and maxillofacial diseases
- Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology—the study and the radiologic interpretation of the oral and maxillofacial diseases
- Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery—the study of the application of implantation, extraction, and other facial surgery disciplines
- Orthodontics (and Dentofacial Orthopedics)—the study and practice of procedures related to the straightening of the teeth; also the procedures related to the midface mandibular growth adjustment modification
- Pediatric Dentistry—the study of dentistry specializing in children
- Periodontics/Periodontology—the study of both surgical and non-surgical periodontium diseases (gum diseases); this is also the study of placing and maintaining related dental implants
- Prosthodontics—the study, practice, and administration of restoration implants as well as dentures and bridges
There are other specialties a dental student could pursue, but are not recognized in North America (though they may be recognized in the United Kingdom). This includes:
- Dental anesthesiology
- Forensic odontology
- Geriatric dentistry
- Oral biology
- Oral medicine
- Special needs dentistry
- Veterinary dentistry
Again, these are specialties that might be considered “emerging” or “unregistered” and are not very common in North America.