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What is the difference between an oral maxillofacial surgeon and periodontist?


Posted on 4/11/2022 by New York Oral, Maxillofacial, and Implant Surgery
What is the difference between an oral maxillofacial surgeon and periodontist?A periodontist is a specialized dental surgeon specializing in preventing, treating, and managing diseases around the dental cavity, the periodontal tissue, and the jawbone. A periodontist specializes in oral implants and maintaining proper health of the mouth's soft and hard dental tissues. On the other side, maxillofacial surgeons specialize in treating and diagnosing various dental procedures, including treating tumors, extractions, cosmetic and reconstructive surgeries, traumatic jaw and facial injuries, oral congenital disabilities, and can administer various forms of anesthesia.

Main differences between the two


While both periodontists and maxillofacial surgeons execute oral procedures, oral surgeons undergo additional training and specialization after completing dental school. In contrast, periodontists require three years of training after dental school. 

Periodontists focus on dental implants and general gum and teeth health; maxillofacial surgeons can perform various oral surgical procedures on the mouth, head, face, neck and jaw. Periodontists and oral surgeons occupy different divisions in the dental realm, although some of their operations may overlap.
Periodontists have specialized training on dental implanting and are trained to perform less invasive procedures without advanced surgeries, unlike oral surgeons. Periodontists mainly focus on gum health and treat extreme cases of gum disease that a regular dentist cannot, for example, cases of patients developing periodontitis. Periodontists can only operate on the soft and hard tissue of the oral region, while maxillofacial surgeons can operate cancerous tumors on the neck, head, face and oral region. 

The difference between the two dental experts is their experience and training, job specialization, education level, and salary. The bottom line is that oral surgeons are medically trained, licensed and equipped to perform more complex operations on the oral and facial regions. In contrast, periodontists are trained limitedly to perform certain distinct procedures in the dentistry realm.

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