What is the difference between an orthodontist and a dentist?
An orthodontist and a dentist both help you to keep your mouth and teeth healthy, but they improve your oral health in different ways. While a dentist deals with your general tooth and gum health, an orthodontist is a specialty field within dentistry, which focuses on correcting structural issues with your bite and teeth. You may visit your dentist for a routine exam and cleaning and find that you need to also visit an orthodontist because your dentist believes you might have a structural problem, such as an overbite.
What services does a dentist provide?
A short visit to the dentist can provide the you with any of the below services:
- Regular dental cleanings and exams
- Mouth cancer screenings
- Dental X-rays
- Tooth whitening and other cosmetic dentistry
- Tooth replacements/crowns
- Denture care
- Tooth fillings
What services does an orthodontist provide?
An orthodontist specializes in the following treatments and services that often require multiple visits and long-term treatment plans:
- Herbst appliance and other corrective appliances
- Two phase treatment
- Orthodontic surgery
- Dentofacial orthodontics
- Damon® system
- Temporary anchorage devices
When should I see an orthodontist instead of a dentist?
Depending on your needs, you may benefit from seeing an orthodontist instead of a dentist. Visit one of our experienced orthodontists at Amazing Smiles Orthodontics if your dentist recommends you to a specialist or if you experience any of the following issues:
- TMJ pain
- Sleep apnea
- Orthodontic emergencies
- Difficulting chewing
- Thumb sucking
- Crowded or overlapping teeth
- Gaps between teeth
- Clicking in your jaw
- Open bite
When should I take my child to see an orthodontist?
If you notice any of the above-mentioned symptoms of an orthodontic problem in your child, it’s important to take them to your nearest orthodontist for an evaluation. Additionally, the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children see an orthodontist for their first visit at the age of 7. This is important because we can provide interventional orthodontic treatments, such as two phase treatment, to avoid future structural issues or to lessen the severity of future dental problems.