Oral and maxillofacial surgeons are the only dental specialists recognized by the American Dental Association who are surgically trained in a hospital-based residency program for a minimum of four to six years.
The six year program allows the individual to obtain a medical degree (M.D.). These unique programs provides some of the most rigorous training in dental implantology and the latest advances in dental bone grafting techniques. Very few dental specialists obtain such extensive formal training in the management of dental implants.
Additionally, oral and maxillofacial surgeons are some of the very few in the medical and dental profession that can provide general anesthesia.
They train alongside medical residents in internal medicine, general surgery and anesthesiology, and spend time in otolaryngology (ear, nose and throat), plastic surgery, emergency medicine and other specialty areas. This training focuses almost completely on the bone, skin and muscle of the face, mouth and jaw.