Qualified Dentist Designation

The criteria used to create the AADSM Qualified Dentist designation were pulled directly from the clinical practice guideline for oral appliance therapy, which was developed and published jointly by the AADSM and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Attaining the designation enables dentists to demonstrate their knowledge of dental sleep medicine to patients, referring physicians and payers.

The Qualified Dentist designation is a necessary first step that will position your practice for growth. The status will build credibility for the oral appliance therapy service that you offer in the treatment of snoring and obstructive sleep apnea. Plus, AADSM members who obtain the Qualified Dentist designation will receive additional recognition on the AADSM's Find-a-Dentist online directory.

Important Update: Changes to Qualified Dentist Designation January 1, 2019
New applications for the Qualified Dentist designation will be accepted online only through December 31, 2018.

Beginning January 1, 2019, the Qualified Dentist designation will be granted only to those that successfully complete the AADSM's Mastery Course I. Those who currently hold the Qualified Dentist designation and wish to renew before it expires will be notified by the AADSM of their opportunity to renew approximately 3 months prior to the expiration date. Scroll down to see a complete list of documentation required to renew the designation.  

In April 2018, the AADSM announced a comprehensive, educational program called the Mastery Program, which has been developed to align with the AADSM’s standard for practice. The Mastery Program will launch in September 2018 and will consist of 65 total hours of learning split into three independent sessions – Mastery I, Mastery II and Mastery III.

After completing Mastery I, which includes an examination, attendees will earn the Qualified Dentist designation.  Beginning January 1, 2019, successful completion of Mastery I will become the only pathway a dentist can be awarded with the AADSM Qualified Dentist designation.  Individuals who complete the entire Mastery Program will be eligible to sit for the ABDSM certification examination and will not be required to submit oral appliance therapy cases to become Diplomates.

Renew your Qualified Dentist Designation

For current holders of the Qualified Dentist designation who would like to apply for renewal of the designation:
Renew Now

Individuals who currently hold the Qualified Dentist designation will receive email notification of their renewal deadline.  The renewal application requires the following:
  • Valid dental license
  • Proof of liability insurance
  • 15 hours of recognized CE (ADA CERP or AGD PACE) through any provider earned within the last 2 years
  • Administrative fee of $100.00

Apply for the Qualified Dentist Designation

This application is for those who do not currently hold the Qualified Dentist designation and would like to apply:

New Applications from Members

Application Fee: FREE 
Apply Now

New Applications from Non-Members

Application Fee: $300 

AADSM members can apply for the designation for FREE. Not yet an AADSM member? You can apply now to join the AADSM and enjoy all the benefits of membership, including your free Qualified Dentist application. If you prefer to apply for the Qualified Dentist designation as a nonmember, then simply complete and return the Non-member Qualified Dentist Designation Application along with your application fee. 

Who should apply?

The AADSM Qualified Dentist designation is for any dentist in need of a starting point designation to show basic competency to patients, sleep physicians and payers. It is meant to be a stepping stone to board certification in dental sleep medicine.

Dentists who are currently certified in dental sleep medicine or the dental director of an accredited facility already meet the definition of a qualified dentist outlined in the Clinical Guideline and do not need this designation to substantiate their knowledge of oral appliance therapy. Currently, international dentists are not eligible for the designation.

What do I need to submit?

To submit an application, you will need to provide the following:

  1. A valid state dental license; 
  2. Proof of liability coverage; and 
  3. At least 25 hours of recognized continuing education in dental sleep medicine (e.g., American Dental Association Continuing Education Recognition Program [ADA CERP] or Academy of General Dentistry Program Approval for Continuing Education [AGD PACE]) provided by a dental sleep medicine focused non-profit organization or accredited dental school in the last two years.

CE verification letters or certificates from the course provider are required for each course, and they must clearly show that they are either a non-profit organization or accredited dental school that is also an ADA CERP or AGD PACE continuing education provider.

CE transcripts are not acceptable for verifying continuing education credits. The documentation must also clearly show that the courses were science-based education in dental sleep medicine or sleep medicine and must include objectives or a detailed agenda for each course that clearly demonstrate that applicants are furthering their clinical knowledge of dental sleep medicine. Courses that are predominantly practice management or billing based will not be accepted.

Of the 25 required CE credits, up to 10 credits may be AMA PRA Category 1 CreditsTM in sleep medicine. The AADSM will also accept an unlimited number of self-instructional and electronically mediated learning activities from acceptable educational providers.

Applicants must be the participant and not the instructor.

How do I know if a course meets the requirements?

As a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that is also an ADA CERP recognized provider for continuing dental education, the AADSM offers a variety of science-based educational opportunities that count toward the Qualified Dentist designation CE requirement. These include:

  • Annual Meeting
  • Courses
  • Online Learning Modules
  • Journal of Dental Sleep Medicine

The AADSM recognizes that there are many other organizations that also meet the criteria to be a recognized CE provider. To confirm that a particular CE provider is a not-for-profit organization, visit GuideStar's website at www.guidestar.org and search for their listing. All IRS-registered non-profit organizations will be listed on GuideStar.

The AADSM has verified that the following educational programs meet the CE criteria for the AADSM’s Qualified Dentist designation. This list is by no means exhaustive, but completion of any of these programs counts toward the fulfillment of the continuing education requirements for the designation:

     CE Provider: American Academy of Craniofacial Pain
     Event Title: Dental Sleep Medicine Mini Residency

     CE Provider: American Academy of Sleep Medicine
     Event Title: Sleep Medicine Trends 2018

     CE Provider: Dr. Dental, IADMD Foundation, Inc.
     Event Title: Dental Sleep Medicine Mini Residency and Pain Management

     CE Provider: New York University School of Dentistry
     Event Title: Dental Sleep Medicine Mini-Residency

     CE Provider: Queens County Dental Society
     Event Title: Costa Rican Sleep Symposium

     CE Provider: The Pankey Institute
     Event Title: Dental Sleep Medicine

     CE Provider: Tufts University School of Dental Medicine
     Event Title: Dental Sleep Medicine: A Comprehensive Introduction
     Event Title: Dental Sleep Medicine Mini-Residency

     CE Provider: University of North Carolina School of Dentistry
     Event Title: Dental Sleep Medicine Mini-Residency

     CE Provider: University of Tennessee Health Science Center - College of Dentistry
     Event Title: University of Tennessee Dental Sleep Medicine Mini-Residency
     CE Provider: University of Utah School of Dentistry
     Event Title: Dental Sleep Medicine Mini-Residency

     CE Provider: UCSF School of Dentistry
     Event Title: Dental Sleep Medicine Mini Residency

     CE Provider: University of the Pacific, Dugoni School of Dentistry
     Event Title: Dental Sleep Medicine Mini-Residency

How long can I hold the Qualified Dentist designation?

All dentists practicing dental sleep medicine are strongly encouraged to become Diplomates of the American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine. However, until a qualified dentist chooses to pursue certification, they will be able to renew their Qualified Dentist designation every two years by:
a. confirming that their license and professional liability coverage are valid
b. documenting 15 hours of recognized continuing education (CE) in dental sleep medicine (ADA CERP or AGD PACE) through any CE provider
c. paying an administrative fee of $100.

Qualified dentists will be able to renew their designation online at AADSM.org as early as three months prior to the expiration date.
January 2018: The “Find a Dentist” directory on the AADSM website transitioned to display contact information only for those members who have the AADSM Qualified Dentist designation, the ABDSM Diplomate Certification or are the director of an AADSM-accredited Facility.

Note: AADSM members who maintain active status as a Diplomate of the American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine (ABDSM) and/or director of an AADSM-accredited Facility do not need to take any additional action in order to maintain their recognition on the AADSM website.

If you have questions about the Qualified Dentist designation requirements, timeline or application process, contact the AADSM at cvick@aadsm.org.
WATCH:  The video recording of the Introduction to the Qualified Dentist Designation Webinar will introduce you to the rationale and research behind the new designation, explain which members are best suited for it, and describe how to prepare for the designation.

Qualified-Dentist-Intro Video