An orthodontist is a dentist who has completed an American Dental Association accredited graduate program in the specialty of orthodontics. A dentist who graduates from a specialty program becomes an orthodontic specialist who is eligible to become board certified through the voluntary examination process of The American Board of Orthodontics (ABO). Involvement in the certification process is a demonstration of the orthodontist's pursuit of continued proficiency and excellence.
The certification process involves a thorough Written Examination covering all areas of information on which an orthodontist should be knowledgeable. Successful passage allows the orthodontist to present treated cases which will be evaluated by expert examiners of the Board during a Clinical Examination. Certification is now awarded for a time-limited period and the orthodontist must re-examine on a periodic basis to retain the board certified status.
Orthodontic specialists who are current Diplomates of The American Board of Orthodontics can be found at Find an ABO Diplomate.
Identifying a Diplomate of the ABO
Always verify the certifying board when an orthodontist does not provide this information. The ABO is the only certifying board recognized by the American Association of Orthodontists and the American Dental Association. An orthodontist certified by the ABO may use these logos: