History of the American Board of Craniofacial Pain
In August of 1985, the original founders of the American Academy of Head, Neck & Facial Pain (now known as the "American Academy of Craniofacial Pain") met in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and ratified the documents that laid the foundation for the creation of the "American Board of Head, Neck & Facial Pain, which is now known as the "American Board of Craniofacial Pain."

Today, as always, the ABCP's sole purpose is to identify, guide, and examine candidates for Diplomate status and to help them complete their credentialing process so that they may a) fulfill the needs of the public and the profession for such certified individuals, and b) promote the high standard of excellence required to treat patients experiencing craniofacial pain, TMD, and sleep-disordered breathing problems.

Significant milestones in the history of the American Board of Craniofacial Pain include the following:
 1985 - 1995
Consistent with its purpose to conduct certification examinations in the field of Craniofacial Pain, the newly formed "American Board of Head, Neck & Facial Pain" dedicated the first decade of its existence to defining eligibility, prerequisites and requirements for Diplomate status; developing the scope, content and format for certifying examinations; and devising sound testing methodologies. Great care was taken to ensure that the certification process was both rigorous and reflective of current Craniofacial Pain/TMD practice parameters and accepted, evidence-based protocols.
The first Board examination is given in the summer of 1995 and fourteen (14) Diplomate certificates are conferred. The dentists who became board certified that summer go on to pioneer advances in assessment, diagnosis and management of Craniofacial Pain that continue to guide the evolution of the American Board of Craniofacial Pain today.

The Board officially adopts its current name — that is, the "American Board of Craniofacial Pain" — in 2000. This change is made, in part, for greater consistency with terminology introduced by the National Institute of Dental & Craniofacial Research (NIDCR).
 2010 - 2012
Total independence of the American Board of Craniofacial Pain Board from the AACP is completed in 2010, with the establishment of a separate 501C6 non-profit corporation.

The ABCP also announces the adoption of a Maintenance of Certification (MOC) requirement, effective with Diplomate certifications issued in 2010 and beyond. This measure is taken to underscore that knowledge and skills demonstrated at the time of certification must remain current and that all ABCP Diplomates must engage in lifelong learning.

 2013 - Present
The ABCP continues its pioneering work in the field of Craniofacial Pain/TMD by announcing the availability of a Craniofacial Dental Sleep Medicine Sub-Discipline Certification, which ultimately led to the creation of a new board-certification administered by an independent certifying board — that is, the American Board of Craniofacial Dental Sleep Medicine.

The ABCP Examination Committee also remains actively engaged in ongoing review of our Diplomate examination, including but not limited to validating the scope of topics covered and the relative weight accorded to each.


Code of Ethics 
Executive Office
Officers & Directors

News & Events
Media Inquiries
Terms of Use
Privacy Policy
Copyright Information