Dental Terminology

Click on a letter for the list of terms beginning with that letter. This glossary contains a list of words or terms that may help you get a handle on the world of dental care.


Gate Keeper System

a managed care concept used by some alternative benefit plans, in which enrollees select a primary care dentist, usually a general practitioner or pediatric dentist, who is responsible for providing nonspecialty care and managing referrals, as appropriate, for specialty and ancillary care.

General Anesthesia

see Anesthesia.


soft tissues overlying the crowns of unerupted teeth and encircling the necks of those that have erupted.


the excision or removal of gingiva.


inflammation of gingival tissue without loss of connective tissue.


surgical procedure to reshape gingiva.

Glass Ionomer

glass polyalkenoate cement: material in which the solid powdered phase is a fluoride-containing aluminosilicate glass powder. The material is translucent and can be used as a restoration, a liner and a luting agent.


a piece of tissue or alloplastic material placed in contact with tissue to repair a defect or supplement a deficiency; allogenic graft - having cell types that are antigenetically distinct from patient’s cell type (usually freeze dried and/or irradiated); autogenous graft - taken from one part of a patient’s body and transferred to another; homologous graft - a graft transplanted froorm a donor of the same species.