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Our glossary features any dental term you need to know, from A to Z. Still confused about something? Give us a call — we’re happy to help.

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  • Adolescent Dentition
    In orthodontic coding, refers to the stage of permanent dentition prior to cessation of growth.
  • Allograft
    Graft of tissue between genetically dissimilar members of the same species. Donors may be cadavers, living related or living unrelated individuals. Also called allogenic graft or homograft.
  • Analgesia
    the diminution or elimination of pain.
  • Anesthesia
    A patient's level of consciousness is determined by the provider and not the route of administration of anesthesia. State dental boards regulate the use of anesthesia techniques. The ADA House of Delegates adopted and has published anesthesia policy and guidelines, which are available online.
  • Anomaly
    deviation from the normal anatomic structure, growth, development or function; an abnormality.
  • Ansii/Ada/Iso
    Acronyms for organizations that administer or develop national and international standards. ANSI (American National Standards Institute) is the national organization established for the purpose of accrediting and coordinating product standards development activities in the United States. It is(...)
  • Anterior
    Mandibular and maxillary centrals, laterals and cuspids. The designation of permanent anterior teeth in the Universal/National tooth numbering system include teeth 6 through 11 (maxillary), and 22 through 27 (mandibular); primary teeth in the Universal/National tooth numbering system are(...)
  • Anthrogram
    A diagnostic X-ray technique used to view bone structures following injection of a contrast medium into a joint.
  • Anxiolysis
    The diminution or elimination of anxiety.
  • Any Willing Provider
    Legislation that requires managed care organizations (MCOs), such as health maintenance organizations (HMOs) and preferred provider organizations (PPOs) to contract with any providers who are willing to meet the terms of the contract.
  • Apex
    The tip or end of the root end of the tooth.
  • Apexification
    The process of induced root development to encourage the formation of a calcified barrier in a tooth with immature root formation or an open apex. May involve the placement of an artificial apical barrier prior to nonsurgical endodontic obturation.
  • Apexogenesis
    Vital pulp therapy performed to encourage continued physiological formation and development of the tooth root.
  • Apicoectomy
    Amputation of the apex of a tooth.
  • Appeal
    A formal request that an insurer review denied or unpaid claims for services or supplies provided. An appeal can be filed by a healthcare provider or a patient in an attempt to recover reimbursement from a third-party payer such as a private insurance company.
  • Arch, Dental
    The curved composite structure of the natural dentition and the residual ridge, or the remains thereof, after the loss of some or all of the natural teeth.
  • Areas Of Oral Cavity
    A two digit numeric system used to report regions of the oral cavity to third party payers. 00 entire oral cavity 01 maxillary arch 02 mandibular arch 10 upper right quadrant 20 upper left quadrant 30 lower left quadrant 40 lower right quadrant
  • Artificial Crown
    Restoration covering or replacing the major part, or the whole of the clinical crown of a tooth, or implant.
  • Assignment Of Benefits
    A procedure whereby a beneficiary/patient authorizes the administrator of the program to forward payment for a covered procedure directly to the treating dentist.
  • Attending Dentist's Statement
    An obsolete term for the ADA Dental Claim Form. See claim form.