What is Board Certification?

Whenever you visit a DFW dental office, you may notice a certificate acknowledging that the dentist has board certification. Have you ever wondered exactly what that means? If so, here is your answer.

Completing dental school is just one component of gaining the qualifications needed to become a dentist. Some dentists may choose to go on to complete a post-graduate residency program, especially if they plan to specialize in a certain area of dentistry. Even general dentists can go on to residencies, though.

A professional license also speaks to a dentist’s ability to perform his or her duties effectively. The license is initially awarded to a professional who has completed certain requirements and subsequently renewed based on fulfilling tasks such as continuing education. Most dentists also choose to display their licenses, along with their diplomas from dental school and any residencies, in the dental office to demonstrate their qualifications to patients.

Board certification goes beyond licensure and certifies a particular dentist as a member of an elite group of practitioners. While a state agency generally awards a license, a professional dental organization will confer board certification on a practitioner. In the case of most family and general dentists, that certification will come from the American Board of General Dentistry.

According to the American Board of General Dentistry, only one percent of general dentists achieve board certification.

In applying for the board certification, the dentist must achieve certain educational benchmarks that demonstrate post-graduate studies of some type. The dentist also must pass rigorous written and oral examinations in order to become board certified. Then, in order to maintain board certification, the dentist must complete a required number of continuing education credits.

Board certification indicates that your dentist has achieved a level of expertise in comprehensive dental care that is limited to a select group of practitioners. You can trust that this certification acknowledges your dentist’s skill and knowledge base, along with the need to remain current on the latest developments in general dentistry.

If you want more information on how a dentist is board certified, ask your dental office today.