Only small % of all Israeli dentists are certified (licensed) specialists in the field of prosthodontics. These are doctors who along with basic dental education received an additional degree. If ordinary dentists have only one license number from the Israeli Ministry of Health, the graduates have two: a dentist’s license number and a graduate specialist’s license number. Graduate prosthetics education lasts 4 to 5 years at the Tel Aviv or Jerusalem University. Upon completion of specialization the dentist must pass two exams:
- A theoretical exam that shows how much the dentist knows of modern scientific research in his field, his knowledge of scientific literature and his ability to approach critically and analytically any professional issue.
- A practical exam, during which the dentist presents before a special commission of the two Universities those clinical cases which he performed during his specialization. The doctor must convince the commission that this and no other plan of treatment and oral rehabilitation is the right one for a given patient. He also has to provide a scientific substantiation on any matter relating to the treatment, raised by the commission members.
The dentist must also conduct clinical research and defend a thesis. Besides the dentist participates in a six-month rotation in adjacent departments – oral pathology, ENT diseases, and others.
Only after that doew he receive a graduate’s specialist license.
With the development of implant dentistry and dental implants, a niche appeared for which specialists in maxillofacial surgery, periodontists, specialists in prosthetics and then general dentists began to “fight”. Nevertheless, implantology remains a free-standing field. Doctors who have started specializing in prosthetics 15 years ago, have taken an entire one-year course in implantology and dental implantation together with periodontists. The specialists who had graduated earlier studied dental implants and implantology independently.
For the patient, it is very important to understand that the implantation of one or more teeth in the area with a good bone basis is a relatively simple procedure for an experienced doctor today. But the full mouth dental implantation, when there is an acute shortage of bone tissue and additional bone graft (augmentation) is necessary, is a completely different level of dentistry that requires experience and knowledge of a graduate specialist in the field of oral rehabilitation (prosthodontics).
After all, implants are not an end in itself. An implant is only an auxiliary post or artificial root, to which teeth (crowns) are attached. The purpose of prosthetics and oral rehabilitation is to restore the function and aesthetics of the patient. That is, in simple words everyone wants to have beautiful white teeth, so that he can comfortably and easily chew and talk.
This is achieved through the proper restoration of dentition and occlusion.
Occlusion is one of the most important components of the intraoral prosthodontics. It is an entire science, which is the most disputed in dentistry. Loss of height of occlusion leads to many problems: such as the problems of the temporomandibular joint, bruxism (teeth grinding), reduction of the lower third of the face, which manifests in an old aging appearance, and so on.
The experience accumulated by a specialist in prosthodontics over many years of work is simply invaluable when it comes to the need to restore the patient’s mouth on the teeth or implants.