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What Is Prosthodontics

Prosthodontics is one of nine dental specialties recognized by the American Dental Association. The typical prosthodontic training includes four years of dental school and three years of prosthodontic training in areas of dentistry that include crowns, bridges, dentures, cosmetics, tempromandibular joint function, and dental implants.

A prosthodontist provides an extremely high level of care for patients who are missing teeth or have significant damage to their existing teeth. Prosthodontists deal with congenital defects, as well as problems caused by trauma and neglect. A prosthodontist can aid in the rehabilitation of a complete dentition or merely in the replacement of one or two teeth. With the advent of dental implants as a viable means of replacing teeth, a prosthodontist's role has expanded substantially. A prosthodontist controls the process and materials to make an implant-supported restoration look and function properly.

A prosthodontist will usually treat the more difficult dental problems such as people who are missing many teeth or have significant functional and/or aesthetic problems. The general practitioner is capable of handling simple crown and bridge procedures to replace and repair missing teeth.   But, patients contemplating dental implants for a whole arch or mouth, or cosmetic changes in their appearance should consult with a prosthodontist to assure that they are gaining the best possible care for their dentition. These difficult and complex treatments require the expertise that is only available by a trained prosthodontist.

Training requirements for prosthodontics are very strict and standardized throughout the country. Because prosthodontics is highly specialized, dentists from all over the world compete to be accepted into these limited training programs in the United States.

Rigorous training and experience provide prosthodontists with the special understanding of the dynamics of the smile, the preservation of a healthy mouth, and the creation of tooth replacements. Serving as the "architect" of a dental treatment plan, prosthodontists collaborate with general dentists, specialists, and other health professionals to develop solutions to your dental concerns.

Dr. McNeel completed his Prosthodontic training at LSU Health Science Center in 1995.   He opened Ozark Prosthodontics in 1996 here in Fayetteville, Arkansas.  Dr. McNeel can be trusted to handle your unique situation due to his high level of skill, training and experience.