Do I Need a Special Dentist for Dental Implants?


Sergio, from Brooklyn, asks:

I hope this question doesn't sound foolish. But, I am seriously considering a dental implant for a missing tooth, and I am not sure what kind of dentist I need to go to for the dental implant. I see many titles for dentists when I search around, but I am not sure what they all mean or if they could help with implants. Are there special dentists for dental implants that I need to go to first? Thanks for your help.

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Expert Advice and Comments
John Vravick 's picture

Do I need a special dentist to get an implant?

Periodontists and oral surgeons have advanced training in surgical procedures including implants. They have the experience to evaluate and place implants. If necessary,they can build up or enhance the bone in the area so an implant can be placed. These specialists work together with general dentists. Once the implant has healed, a post and crown are placed by your general dentist. There are some general dentists, with additional training, that place implants also. If you have a general dentist, that you feel comfortable with, you should discuss this with him first. He can guide you to a specialist that he is comfortable working with. If you are unsure, you can always get a second opinion from another dentist or specialist.

drkazemi's picture

Dentist for dental implant

Answered By: Dr. H. Ryan Kazemi - Bethesda , MD


The answer is yes. Either an oral surgeon or periodontist are the best types of dentists for implant placement. The crown (restoration) can be done by a general dentist or prosthodontist. To help find the right person, it is important to ask the right questions also.

Dr. H. Ryan Kazemi

drdazar's picture

Do I need a special dentist to get an implant?

Answered By: Dr. David E. Azar - New York , NY

Hi Sergio,
That is not a foolish question at all, in fact it is a very good question, and you should be seeking a dentist with special implant training. Certain specialists, such as periodontists (gum specialist), & oral surgeons have this additional training, but not all. Keep in mind that many general dentists or prosthodontists also have this additional training and can do ALL the work in one office.
More importantly this is not the first thing to think about. First you must find a RESTORATIVE dentist with special knowledge about restoring dental implants, of course this may be your regular family dentist whom you should consult if you already have one. The first decision is "what kind of restoration do I need?" If you are only replacing one tooth this will be a simple implant supported crown, but even then there are several options. Once that is decided then you will need a dentist, possibly the same one, to place the implant. Some dentists do all the work and some refer their patients to have the implant placed before coming back to get the restoration.
Hope that helps.
Dr. David E. Azar

David E. Azar, DDS, FICOI, MgIDE
New York, NY

Anonymous's picture

Check Dr. Oogle website, for patient reviews before choosing


I'm an ex Brooklynite, so I'd like to put in my 2 cents:

All the advice above is excellent, by the dentists on this website.

Here's a little more info, from a patient's point of view. I wish I had known all this BEFORE I chose an oral surgeon who was not the best!

Google "Dr. Ooogle, Brooklyn, New York", and see what patients think of various kinds of dentists (oral surgeons, etc.) in your area.

If you see any negative reports at all, take those as a possible warning.

As the docs said:

First, see if your bone in your jaw is OK as it is, to receive an implant. If not dense enough, you may need to get a bone graft.

Then, you have to let the bone graft "take".

Later on, you would get the implant placed into the jawbone.

Get details about the "post", and a later "abutment" and the permanent crown.

The "abutment" attaches at one end of it, to the implant, and the other end of the abutment, attaches or is glued onto the permant crown (fake tooth).

If the abutment isn't "seated" (fully attached to the implant), there can be space between the abutment and the implant, allowing infection and jawbone problems to develop.

Be sure the dentist who puts in the abutment, proves to you, by a clear (not blurry) x-ray, that the abutment has been "seated" fully, into the implant, so that there's no space visible on the x-ray, between abutment and implant!

As the good dentists on this website said, if you're not sure about all of this, get second & third opinions, until you get an honest, and talented, and experienced specialist type of dentist, to do the implant work for you!

Do some homework first. Don't assume all dentists are equally good, or honest.

I wish I had found this website BEFORE I had my implant put in. It'll work, but was not put in at the proper angles, and 2 dentists lied to me, saying the abutment was "seated" into the implant, when it wasn't.

Had to go dentist shopping, until I found a better one, who had to call the implant company, to get advice on how to properly seat the abutment (I think there was a little imperfection between the abutment & the implant "hexes", meaning that a bit more force--but not too much force--overcame, without my feeling any pain, the problem, finally! Xray showed that finally, my new abutment was seated into the implant.

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