Yes. Dental malpractice exists here in California and everywhere else in the country. A dentist is considered a medical professional who must meet certain standards of care just as medical doctors do.
Just as a medical doctor can fail to properly diagnose a condition or take too long to diagnose a condition, so can a dentist. This could delay the proper diagnosis of serious oral conditions such as periodontal disease or mouth cancer. Dentists perform procedures during which they can make mistakes that could cause harm to their patients. If a patient fails to receive the proper after care, he or she could contract a dangerous infection.