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Prosthodontists specialise in the cosmetic reconstruction or replacement of missing or damaged teeth and work to improve either the aesthetic appearance or the function of patients’ teeth and jaws to promote ease of oral functions, such as biting, chewing and talking.
Some prosthodontists may ‘specialise’ in cosmetic dentistry, although this is not one of the formally recognised dentistry specialisms.
They make and attach dental prostheses, including crowns, bridges, dentures and replacements for the tissue found in and around the mouth and face. They also play an important role in monitoring the rehabilitation of patients who have undergone complicated or major procedures.
Some will work in practices with teams of dentists, hygienists, oral healthcare specialists, doctors and other medical professionals. Some will also be based in hospitals as the work often involves surgery.
Patients will usually be referred to a prosthodontist by a general dental practitioner. The prosthodontist will try and identify the problems with the teeth or jaw, devise a treatment strategy, advise the patient on the best course of treatment, discuss procedures and organise costs.
They can deal with all sorts of dental and facial problems, from snoring to the reconstruction of the face after an accident.
To ensure patients are being given the best possible treatment, all dentists and dental care professionals are required by the General Dental Council to undertake a minimum of 250 hours of CPD across a five-year post-registration cycle. CPD could involve any number of activities, including attending seminars or lectures, distance or multimedia learning, private study, peer assessment or research.
Continual Professional Development covers a number of areas relevant to all dental care professionals, the three core subjects of which are dealing with medical emergencies, disinfection and radiography and radiation.
For more information about Continual Professional Development please visit the General Dental Council