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Should the ADA Regulate Cosmetic Dentistry?

June 27th, 2008 · No Comments

cosmetic dentistyThe American Dental Association recognizes nine specialties that require advanced education. These are dental public health, oral and maxillofacial surgery, oral and maxillofacial radiology, oral and maxillofacial pathology, endodontics, orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics, pediatric dentistry (pedodontics), periodontics, and prosthodontics. As you are well aware, cosmetic dentistry isn’t on the list. A survey at DPR World asks whether cosmetic dentistry should become a board-certified specialty. At present, the votes are split almost perfectly, with 51% saying yes and 49% saying no.

While many dentists actively pursue regular CEs in esthetics, any GD can hang a shingle touting “cosmetic dentist.” And because cosmetics accounted for about $500K per practice annually – that’s $2.75 billion total – everyone wants to be a cosmetic dentist! Problem is, the general public doesn’t necessarily know that cosmetic dentistry is not a regulated specialty. Is this misleading? In advertising, a dentist is not supposed to claim to “specialize” in cosmetic dentistry, per the ADA. And a wise consumer will check out a cosmetic dentist’s portfolio before making a move. Still… is it fair? Share your opinion at DPR World!

Tags: Cosmetic Dentistry