Oral health is an important part of our overall health. It is sometimes so easy to overlook, but the truth is that it should be one of your priorities. Poor oral hygiene could lead to serious problems that affect the whole body. So, you need to make sure that your oral health is at its best. Or at least make sure that experts check the state of your oral health ideally twice a year.
And, you may also want to consider a visit to the orthodontist, aside from seeing your family dentist, to check on the overall status of your oral health. . There is sometimes some confusion about who to go to when you want the state of your oral health checked out. It will probably help to learn the distinction between the two.
Dentists and Orthodontists: Similarities and Differences
Similarities and differences between dentists and orthodontists exist. First of all, dentistry is a broad term. It covers those medical specialties that are concerned with the teeth, gums, jaw, and nerves. Orthodontists, on the other hand, specialize in issue concerning bite, occlusion, as well as the straightness of teeth. Take note of the fact that all orthodontists are dentists but not all dentists are orthodontists.
Perhaps the number one similarity between a dentist and an orthodontist is that they are both specialists in oral health. Both are also doctors and care for the teeth and gums of their patients. In these respects, they are similar.
As far as their differences are concerned, there is more to talk about. If one wants to become an orthodontist, then additional schooling is required to specialize in the particular field. An orthodontist’s specialty is the alignment of a patient’s teeth and other matters concerning the jaw, to improve a person’s bite, oral health, speech, and overall appearance. An orthodontist achieves this using corrective devices and apparatus like Invisalign in Redwood City clinics and elsewhere.
If you happen to go to a dentist and they assess that what you really need is an orthodontist, they will likely refer you to one if that is outside their field of specialty. Sure, they are also likely to have undergone basic training in orthodontics, but it is not really their area of expertise. You are still going to be referred to a licensed orthodontist.
Another fact about dentists is that you will need to visit them regularly for the rest of your life. An orthodontist’s services will usually only be required for special cases, some of which were mentioned above.
Both Are Vital to Oral Health
In addition to those cases, an orthodontist is also going to be able to help if you have a crossbite, overbite, and underbite. You can also include the overcrowding of teeth, spaces in between teeth, and treating temporomandibular disorders (TMD) to the list of conditions for which you will need to see an orthodontist. If a patient is suffering from some problems with the jaw then the orthodontist could also help by treating that.
So basically the deal with orthodontists is that they are also dentists. But not all dentists are orthodontists since it is really more of a specialization. The bottom line is that the two are both the specialists to turn to for dental and oral care. It would just really depend on the kind of care that you require.