Throughout this site, I have made frequent reference to orthodontists and a previous post written by Dr. Angus Pringle (here) explains the training required to become an orthodontist in the UK. You may also be aware that a dentist without specialist orthodontic training can provide orthodontic treatment if they are competent to do so. This is where the discussion can get a little more complicated as how is this competence determined and how does a dentist determine if he or she is competent to offer orthodontic treatment to a particular patient?
Many orthodontic system providers such as Six Month Smiles run training courses for dentists to learn about their particular product and techniques and then support dentists to deliver orthodontic treatments to patients as they gain experience in this complex area. Does this represent sufficient training for a dentist to allow them to become competent? This is a topic that appears to be regularly debated by the dental community and one which can be very divisive depending on your view.
Professor Kevin O’Brien has written an excellent article on the topic which discusses the situation in more detail but what is also interesting is the comments below the article from a variety of dentists and orthodontists which reveals the depth of feeling about this topic. If you scroll down the list you will also see a response from me discussing the patients viewpoint on this highly complex topic.
You can view the post here