What is the Difference Between a Dentist and an Oral Surgeon?

General dentists and local Colorado Springs oral surgery doctors perform very similar procedures on patients, but they are also very different in terms of training, expertise and the equipment that they use for the interventions.

Colorado Springs oral surgery

To become oral surgeons, medical students need to complete the training required to become general dentists, after which they must complete another 4-8 years of training to specialize in surgery. The range of treatments performed by the two types of specialists are different, too:

  • General dentists diagnose and treat general oral health issues, such as cavities, gum problems and they also perform root canal treatments, they apply dental fillings, inlays, onlays, crowns, veneers and bridges;
  • Oral surgeons can perform all the procedures that general dentists do, but they usually treat patients referred to them by general dentists with affections that exceed the scope of general dentistry. These treatments include complicated dental extractions, such as wisdom tooth removal, the application of dental implants, the removal of soft tissue and tumors.

The two types of Colorado Springs specialists perform interventions in different environments. While both types of specialists work in offices fitted with standard dental treatment equipment, oral surgeons usually have access to operating rooms where they can perform complex maxilo-facial interventions as well.