Orthodontist vs. Dentist: Why You Need Both

A group of dental utensils with a magnifying glass.

If the thought of going to the doctor, any doctor, gives you hives. You probably avoid stepping into a doctor’s office as much as possible. And the dentist and the orthodontist are probably the most avoided medical professionals, but what they do is essential to your health.Learn more about what they both do and why you need them both:

Regular Dental Cleanings Protect Your Teeth and Gums

Even if you brush and floss regularly and avoid soda and other food and drink that can cause cavities and tooth erosion, you still need to see a dentist. The dentist is the one who will do your teeth and gum cleaning every 6 months to ensure that you don’t have a lot of plaque built up and to be on the watch for cavities and gum infection.

If you have a cavity or the start of gum problems, then the dentist is the one who will treat it and get you back on the road to better oral health. The dentist is also who you go if you need teeth pulled, crowns or implants or dentures. If you make it a priority to see the dentist on a regular basis, however, you will have a better shot of keeping your teeth healthy for years and years to come.

If you are concerned with the appearance of your smile, then set up a consultation appointment with a dentist who specializes in cosmetic dentistry and find out what your options are. From teeth whitening to veneers to braces, there are a lot of options to choose from:

  • Teeth whitening. Teeth tend to discolor with age even if you are always diligent with brushing, flossing and mouthwash and even if you stay away from food and drinks that can increase discoloration like red wine. Teeth whitening is a simple process that is a quick and affordable way to get a brighter smile, whether your teeth are really yellowed or only stained a little bit.
  • Veneers. If your concern is more about chipped teeth, then getting veneers, basically a thin layer of porcelain, put on those teeth will help protect and strengthen them. These chips if left untreated could lead to bigger cracks so it is not just an aesthetic problem.
  • Implants and Dentures. These are for replacing missing teeth. If you have only one or two missing teeth, implants are a great way to improve your smile. When you have a lot of tooth damage, however, dentures might be your best option.

Orthodontists Correct Your Teeth Alignment

If your dentist recommends you see an orthodontist as well because your teeth or jaw are misaligned, then you should take him or her seriously. A straighter smile isn’t just about aesthetics it also affects the health of your smile.

With crooked teeth straightened out and misaligned jaws corrected, you will be able to care for your teeth better which means less cavities and less dental problems like gum disease and tooth loss as you age.

The most common way for the orthodontist to correct crooked teeth or jaw misalignment is through braces. Luckily, advanced technology in the field of orthodontics means that you have more options than you did in years past to get a new smile.

Besides traditional metal braces, you can now choose Invisalign braces which are basically clear plastic aligners that are more comfortable to wear and don’t throw so much of a wrench into your life like metal braces do. This is because the aligners are barely noticeable when you smile and you can remove them when you eat or brush and floss your teeth. As long as you wear them for at least 22 hours, the treatment will be effective.

There are other orthodontic options as well like ceramic braces and the ability to wear the braces adhered to the front of your teeth or the back. Whatever your preferences, there are a lot more options and flexibility than there used to be in orthodontic care. Today’s orthodontic procedures are less painful and often take less time too. Did you know that Invisalign treatment for adults can be completed in just a year or year in a half?

Don’t let your age keep you from improving your smile either. It is important to keep in mind that teeth can move at any age, whether from injury, an illness or just natural growth. It is not like there is just a small window of opportunity when you are a tween or a teen to do something about your crooked teeth. Even if you had braces when you were young, you may need them again. You are never too old for braces. You may also may be required to wear a retainer after the braces are removed to maintain the new positioning. A positive about getting braces as an adult is that we are usually better able to take proper care of them and follow instructions as adults than as teens.

For more information about orthodontic care, call Orthodontics Limited for an initial consultation. With locations in Philadelphia and Hatboro, including a new location in Rittenhouse Square in Philadelphia, they specialize in various orthodontics treatments including Invisalign.

Drs. Pale, Gemmi and Middleberg know what a big difference a straighter smile can make in a person’s life. Not only does it help restore self-confidence, it makes it easier to practice proper oral hygiene so you have a healthy, beautiful smile for years to come. The staff at Orthodontics Limited also understand that each person’s situation is different so that is why they take the time to sit down with you and go over your options. They will create the best treatment plan for your particular needs.

They will also work with you to come up with an affordable plan to pay for your treatment which may not be completed covered by your insurance. The staff at Orthodontics Limited is also very compassionate and friendly and will always greet you with a smile giving you comfort and peace of mind a priority during your visits to the office.

Call Orthodontics Limited today for more information.