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Orthodontists Vs. General Dentists: What’s the Difference?

Posted on October 15, 2020

Orthodontists are dental specialists. Typically, your general dentist is the one who will refer you to the orthodontist. While general dentists and orthodontists share many traits, they are different.
Both dental practices and orthodontic practices are focused on providing top-notch oral health care. However, the type of care that they provide is different. Understanding the difference will help to ensure that you are seeing the right dental professional that meets your needs.

Every Orthodontist is a Dentist — But Not Every Dentist is an Orthodontist

These two career fields start out in much the same way. Both dentists and orthodontists go to dental school to become dentists. They both learn everything that they need to about the structure of teeth, proper placement of teeth, how to care for the teeth, and a wide range of treatment options. Both general dentists and orthodontic specialists will spend time getting a formal education and working in dental clinics for hands-on treatment training. Most will work under an experienced dentist for some time.

However, most general dentists will finish their schooling after receiving their dental degree. Orthodontic specialists, on the other hand, go onto a more formal education once they pick this specialty. An orthodontist will learn more about clear braces and metal braces, as well as an in-depth understanding of proper placement of teeth and how to treat other problems associated with the misalignment of the teeth and jaw. In many cases, orthodontists spend an additional two years in school to be able to provide specialty care to patients.

Dental Care

To recap, both dentists and orthodontic specialists provide necessary dental care to improve your oral health. However, there are certain procedures that only an orthodontist is trained to carry out. For example, if you need fillings or some cosmetic work, you would see your general dentist. But if you have a structural problem with your teeth, then you would see a highly qualified orthodontist Los Angeles has to offer.

If you think you may be in need of braces, you can contact your general dentist for a referral to an orthodontist — or you can make an appointment directly with the orthodontist for an evaluation. To learn more, please contact our orthodontist, Dr. Zamani, at TruSmile Orthodontics today.