Here at Rhoads Orthodontic Specialist, we believe dental and orthodontic care goes hand-in-hand when it comes to healthy smiles in childhood. Regular dental check-ups are essential for maintaining a child’s teeth and gums, but did you know that orthodontists also play an important role in their proper oral development?
These two professions complement each other, but we’ve seen some blurring of the lines in recent years, with many general dentists now offering some form of orthodontic treatment. While it’s true that there are many similarities between the two, dentists and orthodontists are not interchangeable.
Understanding the differences that exist in their education and training can help you make a more informed decision when it comes to your family’s oral health! Let’s take a closer look at why you should always trust your smile to an expert orthodontist.
What are the differences between dentists and orthodontists?
Orthodontists and dentists are on a similar path throughout dental school but go their separate ways after graduation. After completing four years of undergraduate education and four years of dental school, dentists are required to pass rigorous written and clinical licensing exams before they can begin practicing. Orthodontists take this a few steps further!
Once dental school is complete, an aspiring orthodontist will begin a two- or three-year residency. These residencies have a specific focus on diagnosing and correcting orthodontic issues and include almost 5,000 hours of additional training. It’s no wonder only 6% percent of dentists go on to become orthodontists! This also means that most general dentists won’t possess anywhere near the level of extensive training and experience an orthodontist has had.
Dentists are generally concerned with the “big picture” aspects of a patient’s mouth when it comes to oral health. Regular checkups help them identify and treat many oral hygiene problems, and they can improve the function and appearance of a patient’s teeth with cosmetic and restorative treatments. Dentists are also trained to spot signs of oral disease and give patients expert advice on maintaining healthy teeth and gums.
Orthodontists tend to provide more specialized care. They’ve been trained to align the jaws and move the teeth, so they’re able to correct a range of orthodontic issues like crowded teeth, overbites, and misalignments. Dr. Rhoads does this by creating customized treatment plans based on each patient’s specific needs, using a range of orthodontic appliances such as traditional braces and clear aligners. This guarantees patients a more rewarding orthodontic experience with long-lasting results they can enjoy for many years to come!
Why should you trust an orthodontist with your family’s smiles?
There can be some overlap in the services dentists and orthodontists offer within a particular area. Every dentist receives some basic orthodontic training at school, which means some are capable of providing a certain level of orthodontic care to their patients. This may include braces or clear aligners. In general, however, a dentist won’t have the same education, training, or experience that an experienced orthodontist like Dr. Rhoads has.
What does that mean for you and your family? If someone develops a toothache or cavity, you’ll definitely want to make the dentist your first stop. But if you’re dealing with a misalignment between the teeth and jaw, crooked teeth, or other issues related to oral development, a smile specialist like Dr. Rhoads is who you want on the job!
If your family dentist offers orthodontic care, you may be considering this as an option. You’re already familiar with their office and staff, and people tend to prefer the known to the unknown. But before you move forward with orthodontic treatment by your dentist, take a moment to consider what a qualified orthodontist can offer you, such as:
- a wider variety of treatment options
- a customized treatment plan built around your unique smile
- more efficient treatments and visits
- the best possible outcome, especially if your case is complex or severe
Rhoads Orthodontic Specialist is a family-focused practice committed to providing personalized care to patients of all ages. We work hard to perfect our teeth-straightening techniques using the latest orthodontic techniques and technology! Since this is something we do every day, every member of your family can expect exceptional results and a more rewarding experience from start to finish.
Trust your family’s oral health to the expert team at Rhoads Orthodontic Specialist
Our practice is proud to provide Cranberry Township families with a variety of affordable treatment options, a stress-free orthodontic journey, and a lifetime of healthy smiles! If you’d like to learn more about what orthodontics has to offer you and your family, why not schedule a FREE consultation with Dr. Rhoads?
During your consultation, you’ll receive a comprehensive examination, and our team will walk you through any issues that are present. We’ll also outline a personalized treatment plan for your unique smile. This no-pressure appointment is completely free of charge! If you decide not to pursue orthodontic treatment immediately, our team will still be happy to answer any questions or address any concerns you might have to help you make an informed decision.
Get in touch today to schedule a complimentary consultation for you or another member of your family. Your best smiles are waiting here for you!