If you’re like many people, you may have wondered what the difference is between a dentist and an orthodontist. While both professions focus on oral health, they have different areas of expertise and provide different services. In this post, we’ll explore the difference between dentists and orthodontists, the treatments they provide, and how often you should visit them to maintain optimal oral health.
Training for Dentists and Orthodontists
To become a dentist, one must complete a dental school program after earning an undergraduate degree. General dentists are trained to diagnose and treat a wide range of dental problems, from tooth decay and gum disease to cracked teeth and root canals. They also perform routine teeth cleaning and provide oral care advice to their patients.
On the other hand, orthodontists are dental specialists who receive additional training beyond dental school. After completing dental school, they must complete an orthodontics residency program that typically lasts two to three years. Orthodontists specialize in diagnosing, preventing, and treating misaligned teeth and jaws. They provide a range of orthodontic care, including braces, lingual braces, and other treatment options to improve teeth alignment and facial growth.
Services and Treatments Dentists Provide
General dentists offer a range of services to maintain overall oral health. These services include teeth cleaning, X-rays, fluoride treatments, and oral cancer screenings. They can also treat dental problems such as cavities, gum disease, and cracked teeth. If a dental issue requires dental surgery or a specialist’s attention, a general dentist may refer the patient to an oral surgeon or dental specialist.
Services Provided By Your Orthodontist in O’Fallon
Orthodontic care focuses on correcting issues with teeth alignment and jaw growth. Orthodontists provide a range of services to improve their patient’s smiles, including braces, lingual braces, clear aligners, and other treatment options. They also address issues with misaligned jaws and crowded teeth. An orthodontist will evaluate the patient’s teeth and develop a personalized treatment plan to achieve optimal results. In fact, the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children go to an orthodontist by the age of 7. Then, the provider can see how the jaws and teeth are developing and determine if early treatment is needed to prevent problems.
How Often Should You Go to the Dentist?
The American Dental Association recommends that people visit the dentist every six months for routine teeth cleaning and oral care. Regular checkups allow dentists to detect dental problems early and prevent them from becoming more severe. However, the frequency of dental visits may vary depending on the patient’s overall oral health and risk factors for dental issues.
Signs That You Need to Visit an Orthodontist in O’Fallon
Orthodontic treatment can correct a range of dental issues, from misaligned teeth to misaligned jaws. If you have crooked or crowded teeth, overbite, underbite, or other issues with teeth alignment, it’s essential to visit an orthodontist. Signs that you may need orthodontic treatment include difficulty chewing or biting, teeth grinding or clenching, speech problems, and jaw pain.
Consult With an Orthodontist
Getting started with an orthodontist is easy when you choose Ries and Cherre Orthodontics. You can schedule your free consultation online. Then, you’ll meet with the orthodontist to determine if you or your child needs orthodontic care. We offer the Empower System, so you can shorten your treatment time if desired. You can also go with traditional braces or Invisalign with us.
Begin by scheduling your consultation online or by calling (636) 230-6100. You can then visit our O’Fallon or Ellisville, MO, office.