Prosthodontics, also known as dental prosthetics or prosthetic dentistry, is the area of dentistry that focuses on dental prostheses. Prosthodontic treatment includes crowns, bridges, veneers, inlays, onlays, complete and partial dentures. Dental implants have become the preferred method for replacing missing teeth. So many prosthodontic procedures today are done with implant prosthodontics as the support instead of the natural teeth or gums. Prosthodontic care is provided by both general dentists and prosthodontists. They have also received advanced training in implant dentistry, TMD-jaw joint problems, traumatic injuries to the mouth's structures, congenital or birth anomalies to teeth, snoring, sleep disorders, and oral cancer reconstruction and continuing care. Prosthodontists are masters of complete oral rehabilitation. Maxillofacial prosthodontists treat patients who have acquired and congenital defects of the head and neck (maxillofacial) region due to cancer, surgery, trauma, and/or birth defects. Maxillary obturators, speech-aid prosthesis (formerly called as Pharyngeal/soft palate obturators) and mandibular-resection prostheses are the most common prostheses planned and fabricated by Maxillofacial prosthodontists. Treatment is multidisciplinary, involving oral and maxillofacial surgeons, plastic surgeons, head and neck surgeons, ENT doctors, oncologists, speech therapists, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, and other healthcare professionals. Sometimes called the “architects of the smile,” prosthodontists are highly trained specialists with a unique understanding of all the elements that go into a beautiful, functional and natural-looking smile—not just the teeth, but also the gums, lips, and facial features.
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