Dentistry is a broad based subject which is divided into the following specialisms:

  • Dental public health
  • Endodontics
  • Oral microbiology
  • Oral surgery
  • Oral and maxillofacial surgery
  • Orthodontics
  • Paediatric dentistry
  • Periodontics
  • Prosthodontics
  • Restorative dentistry
  • Special needs surgery

Each of these sub-sections contains information about individual treatments: for example the cosmetic dentistry section discusses a range of cosmetic procedures, e.g. dental implants.

All of these specialisms are concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of a wide range of dental conditions. These conditions often impact on the rest of the body.


The General Dental Council (GDC) has lists of dentists plus dental specialists. To qualify for the title of ‘specialist’ the dentist has to meet strict criteria set by the GDC which gives them permission to use this term. Their name appears on the Specialist List and they are expected to commit to an on-going development programme as a condition of inclusion on that list.