Prosthodontics is a field of dentistry that deals with restoring missing teeth with prosthetic replacements.
(Prostho – relating to prosthetic devices to replace teeth and/or oral tissues; dontist ‐ dentist)
A prosthodontist is specially trained in replacing missing teeth by placing and restoring dental implants including, mandibular (lower jaw) implant overdentures, dentures and bridges. They are experts in treating severe tooth wear and temporomandibular disorder. Prosthodontists are specialists in providing a smile make over and a full mouth reconstruction.
Today, dental implants are virtually indistinguishable from natural teeth. This appearance is aided in part by structural and functional connection between the dental implant and the living bone. Implants are usually made of titanium and can be placed in a single visit. They will then require a period of osseointegration. Osseointegration is the process by which direct anchorage of a dental implant and the bone of the jaw occurs.
You will need a full assessment to see if you can have implants. You may require further investigation using radiographs or CT scans.
There are various ways to achieve well-fitting dentures. One way is to make new conventional dentures. Sometimes, however, it is best to have an implant retained over denture (a denture that is supported and held in place by 2 or more implants).
Prosthodontists have in-depth knowledge and extensive training and experience in understanding the relationship of teeth and jaws necessary for a proper function. They have therefore the expertise in treating patients with problems with their bite and the function of their jaw.
Working with other doctors, prosthodontists can provide treatment for patients with birth defects such as cleft palate; conditions such as temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMD); traumatic injuries; and complex restorations for patients who have undergone surgical or radiation treatment for cancer.