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How Do I Choose the Best Oral Pathologist?

By Kristeen Moore
Updated May 17, 2024
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The best oral pathologist is one that has an extensive background in the particular type of dental disease for which you are seeking treatment. These types of oral professionals are a step up from a general dentist because they are specifically trained to diagnose and treat diseases versus only preventive care. When you search for an oral pathologist, it is also important for the professional to have an extensive education and laboratory background. You might also consider seeking an oral maxillofacial pathologist if you need surgery. It is advisable to set up interviews with multiple oral pathologists, and to seek references if you are in doubt concerning an individual’s credibility.

An oral pathologist is a type of dental professional who is trained to identify and recommend treatment measures for areas of concern within the mouth, neck, and jaw area. This specialty dentist is most commonly sought after if your general practitioner suspects any signs of cancer in tissues within the region. Some types of oral pathologists are trained to treat certain types of conditions, so you should choose the appropriate professional that is skilled in your particular area of concern.

While they are required to go to basic dental school, a reputable oral pathologist will have even more education and training experience than your general dentist. Such individuals are required to undergo specific schooling for oral pathology after a dental program, as well as medical training due to the nature of the job. An oral pathologist will likely display his or her credentials in the office for patients to see. If you are uncertain, do not be afraid to ask about a particular pathologist’s background.

Many oral pathologists are also educated in the area of maxillofacial surgery, which concerns the mouth and the jaw. Although maxillofacial surgeons are commonly used to extract teeth, they are also utilized to remove other areas of concern within the region. Depending on your condition, you might consider choosing an oral maxillofacial pathologist so that you can see the same professional to diagnose, treat, and remove any areas in question.

General dentists will often refer patients to an oral pathologist if they suspect any health problems or diseases. At the same time, it is still practical to compare a few professionals in order to ensure that you pick the best fit for you. Most credible pathologists will allow you to come in for an interview or a consultation so that you can see what their offices and mannerisms are like. If a particular oral pathologist does not seem credible to you, then you might consider asking for references.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

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