When you are choosing a dentist, you may be confused by the terms DDS and DMD after a dentist’s name. If you feel confused, don’t worry. Many people also share your confusion, Understanding what these two terms mean and how they affect a dentist’s abilities and training will help you make an informed decision about your care.
DDS stands for Doctor of Dental Surgery. This is the degree that Dr. Grabiak has been awarded. This is the original dentistry degree and emphasizes surgical dental care, but Doctors of Dental Surgery are able to treat all types of dental concerns, whether or not they involve surgery, and are also skilled at prevention measures.
DMD stands for Doctor of Dental Medicine, or in the Latin, “Dentariae Medicinae Doctoris.” This degree came into the being from Harvard in the late 1800s. When they started training dentists, they needed a Latin degree to place on their graduates, but the Latin translation for Doctor of Dental Surgery was “Chirurgae Dentium Doctoris,” or CDD, which they did not like. Because of this, they changed the degree to the DMD terminology. The training, however, remained the same.
Some believe that these dentists are more focused on the overall medical health of the patient, but the truth is that DDS and DMD doctors receive almost identical training. In fact, the only real difference is the school that the dentist graduated from. Some schools award DDS and others award DMD, but the training varies only in so much as training can vary from one school to the next.
If you are in the market for a dentist, don’t focus so much on the semantics of what degree they have. Regardless of whether they have a DMD or a DDS degree, the dentist has had excellent training. Instead, make your decision based on the dentist’s professionalism, level of care, and local reputation.