Most dentists are general practitioners, handling a variety of
dental needs. Other dentists practice in any of nine specialty areas.
largest group of specialists, straighten teeth by applying pressure to
the teeth with braces or other appliances.
The next largest
group, oral and maxillofacial surgeons, operates on the mouth, jaws,
teeth, gums, neck, and head.
The remainder may
specialize as pediatric dentists (focusing on dentistry for children and
special-needs patients); periodontists (treating gums and bone
supporting the teeth); prosthodontists (replacing missing teeth with
permanent fixtures, such as crowns and bridges, or with removable
fixtures such as dentures); endodontists (performing root-canal
therapy); oral pathologists (diagnosing oral diseases); oral and
maxillofacial radiologists (diagnosing diseases in the head and neck
through the use of imaging technologies); or dental public health
specialists (promoting good dental health and preventing dental diseases
within the community).
Note: Some resources in this section are provided by the US Department
of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.