What is Prosthodontics?
Prosthodontics is a specialised area of dentistry that focuses on the health, function and aesthetics of the dentition. Prosthodontics is the specialty of restoration of the tooth or replacement of the missing tooth (or teeth), by placing veneers, crowns, bridges, dental implants or dentures.
What is a Prosthodontist?
A Prosthodontist is a registered dental specialist who has completed further years of university studies in complex restorative dentistry. Prosthodontists are often the coordinators of complex treatment issues and frequently patients are referred to specialist Prosthodontists by their general dentist. Alternatively some patients refer themselves to the specialist due to a personal preference for specialist care. A Prosthodontist will work with the patient to assemble a plan to restore the dentition as determined by the functional and aesthetic needs.
How can a Prosthodontist help you and your smile?
A Prosthodontist specialises in the reconstruction of the oral cavity to an optimal dentition via a broad range of treatment options. The Prosthodontist will begin with the diagnosis of the current state of the patients mouth, before creating a treatment plan and fee estimate which is suitable to each patients individual requirements and financial allowances. Once the patient consents to procced with treatment the sequence of necessary appointments will be made to start rehabilitation. During the process the Prosthodontist works closely with other dental specialists and the general dentist throughout the treatment process. (Appointments with other specialists will be scheduled at the beginning of the treatment process to minimise any times delays.)
A Prosthodontist has three core areas in which they focus on:
- The Oral Health of a patient. Prosthodontists determine the current state of the patient’s mouth and from here the Prosthodontist works with the patient and the dental hygienist to manage their dental health. Each patient will be provided an individual solution that best benefits their optimum dental health. Disease elimination is an important initial phase of dental therapy.
- The functionality of a patients mouth. The Prosthodontist will assess whether the patient is able to eat and talk at ease. If the patient is unable to chew or speak clearly due to a deficiency of teeth/bone, they will assess where the patient is having trouble and develop a solution for the patient to return to a functional healthy mouth.
- The aesthetics of a patient’s mouth. A Prosthodontist will evaluate a patient and help present the patient with a smile that they can be proud of.
Do you need a Prosthodontist?
In most instances your General Dentist will determine whether they are capable of managing your dental issues. If the rehabilitation is complex or the dentist is not comfortable in managing the task at hand, a referral to a Prosthodontist may be initiated. The alternative scenario is when a patient elects to seek a specialist opinion regarding a dental issue. Patients can initiate this directly if a second opinion is required.
Ultimately the specialist will work with the General Practitioner to achieve the best result for the patient. As a specialty practice we encourage patients to spend the time in planning procedures carefully such that good long term outcomes can be achieved.