Qualifications required to become a prosthodontist include earning a bachelor’s degree, passing the Dental Admission Test, graduating from dental school, getting licensed and completing residency training. Prosthodontists use veneers, crowns, bridges, dental implants and dentures to restore damaged or missing teeth.
The first step to becoming a prosthodontist is to earn a bachelor’s degree, preferably majoring in a science such as biology to increase the chances of getting admitted into dental school. Dental schools typically require students to complete specific undergraduate classes, which may include psychology, biology, English and physics.
Students applying to dental school are required to take the Dental Admission test at least one year prior to submitting an application. The DAT covers quantitative reasoning, natural sciences, perceptual skills and reading comprehension in four multiple-choice tests.
Prosthodontists are also required to graduate from a four-year program in an accredited dental school. Coursework may include dental materials, dental anatomy, craniofacial biology and epidemiology. Students may earn a Doctor of Dental Medicine degree or Doctor of Dental Surgery upon completion of the programs.
Prosthodontists are required to be licensed to work legally in the United States, although licensing requirements vary from one state to another. All states, however, require dentists to pass the National Board Dental Examinations.
Prospective prosthodontists must complete a post-doctoral residency program in prosthodontics, which typically takes three years. Students gain experience performing dental implant treatments and oral restorations. The programs focus on technical and clinical skills in areas including oral biology, biostatistics, anatomy, diagnosis and pathology.