We might make it look easy here at Selden Orthodontics, but creating beautifully aligned smiles is actually a pretty complex process! The treatment process uses a variety of orthodontic appliances to apply precise force to the teeth, moving them into more desirable positions over time. There are numerous benefits to this kind of specialized treatment! Aside from improving the look and feel of your smile, correcting orthodontic issues and trusting your family’s smiles to an orthodontist will also enhance your overall oral health. But where do you begin?
The first step towards a straighter smile is finding the right provider for you and your family. In recent years, more dentists have begun offering some basic orthodontic care, such as treatment with clear aligners. Although many people believe that dentists and orthodontists are more or less interchangeable, the truth is there are some significant differences between the two professions.
Understanding more about these distinctions can help you make a more informed decision when it comes to your family’s oral health, so let’s take a closer look at them! Keep reading below to learn more.
What are the biggest differences between an orthodontist and a dentist?
The main difference between an orthodontist and a general dentist is that the former has received additional education and specialized training in orthodontic care. While all dentists follow a similar path in dental school, those wishing to become orthodontists after graduation must then complete an orthodontic residency of two years or longer. These programs focus specifically on diagnosing and correcting orthodontic issues, and include almost 5,000 hours of further training!
This kind of rigorous instruction helps to explain why only about 6 percent of dentists go on to become orthodontists. It also means that most general dentists will be lacking in training and experience when compared to a trained orthodontic specialist. Some general dentists do explore orthodontic care through continuing education courses, targeted seminars, and other training, but with so much riding on the quality of treatment, choosing an orthodontic specialist like Dr. Selden will ensure superior results in the shortest amount of time possible.
Trust an orthodontist to get your bite right
When we talk about your bite, we’re referring to a complicated biologic system that includes the teeth, upper and lower jaws, gums, and facial muscles. Our goal is to position each element for optimal performance, which is the key to a healthy bite! This allows you to bite, chew, and even speak well.
When it comes to oral health, a dentist is generally looking at the overall picture. Regular checkups help them identify any dental hygiene problems, and they can improve the function and appearance of a patient’s teeth through crowns, veneers, and other cosmetic treatments. Dentists are also trained to spot signs of oral disease and are able to offer advice on how to maintain healthy teeth and gums.
Orthodontists tend to provide more specialized care. As specialists, they’ve spent years studying and training in orthodontics. They can align the jaws and move the teeth using a variety of appliances, and are able to correct a wide range of issues, from crowded and gapped teeth to overbites and misalignments. An experienced orthodontist like Dr. Selden will have the knowledge and skills necessary to identify, diagnose, and correct your specific problem using a personalized treatment plan.
The perfect solution for your unique smile
When you look in the mirror or at your child’s smile, you may see a gap in the teeth or how one overlaps another. An orthodontist, on the other hand, will see the cause of these issues in three dimensions. Dr. Selden’s education, experience, and expertise mean that he is able to examine your smile and discover the root of any problems. This will allow him to create an individualized solution for your specific smile, one that delivers a healthier mouth and lasting results!
There may be some dentists in your area who offer basic orthodontic care, such as braces or clear aligners. This might include your own dentist! All dental students do receive some basic orthodontic training, but in general, most won’t have the same education, training, or experience that an orthodontist has. So what does that mean for you and your family?
The benefits of choosing an orthodontist
If someone develops a toothache or cavity, you’ll want to make the dentist your first stop! But if you’re dealing with misalignments and other issues related to oral development, an orthodontic specialist like Dr. Selden is who you want to see. If your family dentist does offer orthodontic care, it’s normal for you to consider them as an option. You’re already familiar with their office and staff, and most of us prefer the known over the unknown.
Before you move forward with orthodontic treatment by your dentist, however, it’s worth taking a moment to consider the benefits of choosing an experienced orthodontist. These often include:
- a wider variety of treatment options
- a customized treatment plan built around your unique smile
- more efficient treatments and visits, since orthodontics is the main focus
- the best possible outcome for your smile, especially if you have a more severe or complex case
Trust your family’s smiles to Selden Orthodontics
At Selden Orthodontics, we want to give you a dazzling smile that lasts and a healthy bite, too! We have a single focus here—providing high-quality orthodontic care to families throughout the Charlotte and Huntersville communities.
Our talented team puts a lot of hard work into perfecting our service and our techniques, and patients of all ages benefit from the cutting-edge technology we use in our two convenient locations. Because Dr. Selden performs teeth-straightening procedures almost every day, you can expect unmatched service and superior results from our practice!
We only get one smile—why trust it to anything less than an expert? Your family deserves a lifetime of happy, healthy smiles! Get in touch with us today to schedule your FREE consultation with Dr. Selden.