If you or someone in your family is having dental issues, you may be considering seeking out help from a professional. From there, the main question you may have is whether you should see an orthodontist or a dentist. While they may seem similar, orthodontists and dentists are vastly different from one another. To help simplify things, we thought it would be useful to put together a brief article about this subject. If this is something that you’re interested in learning more about, read on as we break down everything you need to know about how orthodontists are different from dentists.
What Do Orthodontists and Dentists Have in Common?
Before anything else, it’s important to talk about what orthodontists and dentists have in common. Essentially, they both work with teeth. Orthodontists help to straighten teeth and improve smiles while dentists work to prevent, diagnose, and treat oral health problems. Both types of professionals use a variety of tools to do their jobs, including x-ray machines, drills, and other dental equipment.
How Do Orthodontists and Dentists Differ?
The main difference between orthodontists and dentists is that orthodontists specialize in correcting teeth and jaw alignment while dentists mainly focus on oral hygiene and preventing, diagnosing, and treating oral disease. Orthodontists have to complete an extra two to three years of schooling after getting their DDS or DMD degree. In addition to taking coursework, they also have to complete a clinical residency program.
Orthodontists use a variety of devices to align the teeth, including braces, expanders, and headgear. They also use other appliances to change the shape of the roof of the mouth, jaw, and face. Dentists also use braces to align teeth, but they mainly focus on preventing, diagnosing, and treating oral disease.
Why Do You Need to See an Orthodontist?
Are you unhappy with the way your teeth look? Do you have trouble chewing or speaking? If so, you may need to see an orthodontist. An orthodontist is a dentist who specializes in correcting teeth that are crooked, overcrowded, or protruding. Orthodontists use braces, retainers, and other devices to align teeth and jaws.
If you are considering orthodontic treatment, you should visit an orthodontist for a consultation. During the consultation, the orthodontist will examine your mouth, teeth, and jaw. They will also ask questions about your dental history and any concerns you have about your teeth. After the consultation, the orthodontist will develop a treatment plan. The treatment plan will likely involve wearing braces or another device for an extended period of time. Orthodontic treatment can be expensive, but it is often covered by dental insurance. If you are considering orthodontic treatment, be sure to check with your insurance provider to see if it is covered.
We hope this article proves to be useful when it comes to helping you gain a better understanding of how orthodontists are different from dentists. Be sure to keep everything that we’ve discussed here in mind if you are ever in need of dental treatments.
Solarte Orthodontics is committed to providing quality dental care to all our patients. Whether you need to have a retainer installed or just a regular consultation, our family orthodontist in Manassas is always ready to help. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.