Dentists and orthodontists work hard to improve patients’ oral health.

Both qualified in general dentistry, they have many things in common – but dig a little deeper and you’ll uncover some tangible differences.

Wondering whether it’s enough to register with a general dentist or if you should see an orthodontist instead of (or as well as) your regular dentist?

Read on as the team at E11even Dental takes a closer look at orthodontists vs dentists.

Orthodontist vs Dentist - elleven Dental

Orthodontist vs dentist

While all orthodontists are qualified dentists, not all dentists are orthodontists and they actually work in different ways.

For instance, a dentist will take care of your wider oral health – ensuring your teeth, gums, jaw and the nerves in your mouth are strong and healthy.

Orthodontists, on the other hand, are dental specialists. They focus on straightening teeth and correcting bite issues and complete an additional three years of training at university (on top of their dental degree) to provide them with more knowledge within their niche.

What do dentists do?

A general dentist is a skilled practitioner who can diagnose and treat common dental issues and help you maintain good oral health.

Most dentists will provide a host of restorative treatments, including (but not limited to) root canal work, crowns, bridges, dentures and fillings for patients with cracked, chipped, broken, decaying, misshapen or missing teeth.

Private dentists usually offer a wide range of cosmetic dental treatments, too. And as the best cosmetic dentist in London, E11even Dental specialises in everything from teeth whitening and composite bonding to dental implants, porcelain veneers, facial aesthetics, and more!

Although a regular dentist will check for signs of oral diseases, if you require orthodontic treatment to align your jaws, straighten your teeth or improve your bite, they will refer you to a dental specialist (AKA an orthodontist).

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What do orthodontists do?

Trained in general dentistry, an orthodontist can normally diagnose and treat the same dental concerns as your dentist.

However, one of the biggest differences between the two is that, after undertaking a three-year postgraduate course at Masters level, orthodontists will hold a General Dental Degree and a Specialist Orthodontic Degree.

They specialise in aligning the jaws and correcting the position of teeth – both in childhood and adulthood.

This includes:

  • Overbites
  • Underbites
  • Crossbites
  • Crowded teeth
  • Gapped teeth
  • Temporomandibular disorders (TMD)

Since malocclusions (misaligned teeth and jaws) are unique to each patient, these dental professionals tend to use X-rays and photographs of the teeth to create bespoke treatment plans.

Depending on the level of correction required, this will involve the installation of dental appliances such as traditional braces, Damon braces, lingual braces, London Invisalign clear aligners or retainers.

Orthodontist vs Dentist - elleven Dental

What are the benefits of visiting an orthodontist?

An orthodontist possesses the appropriate knowledge and skills to treat various smile concerns.

Opting for treatment with one of the best orthodontists London has to offer will provide you with a straighter and brighter smile – helping to boost your confidence.

Another great thing about visiting an orthodontist is that, when teeth are properly aligned, the chances of them decaying and you developing gum disease are significantly reduced – which is great for your oral health!

Protruding teeth are more likely to be damaged or broken as a result of trauma or accidental injury – but seeking treatment from an orthodontist in London at E11even Dental can lessen the risk of fractures.

Orthodontic treatment can also prepare natural teeth for restorative care and further dental work later down the line (i.e. crowns, bridges, implants, etc.).

Orthodontist vs Dentist - elleven Dental

Orthodontist vs dentist: who should you see?

At E11even Dental, we are proud to be the best cosmetic dentist in London – specialising in all aspects of general dentistry, cosmetic treatments and orthodontics.

Most people begin by visiting our general practitioners on Harley District – attending routine check-ups at least twice a year.

After assessing the condition of your teeth and gums, your dentist will discuss your dental concerns. If it becomes clear that you could benefit from straighter teeth or want to improve your facial symmetry, we can refer you to our trained orthodontist.

We will devise a tailored treatment plan to help you achieve your dream smile and talk you through the procedure – so you know exactly what to expect. We’ll also outline the associated costs with your orthodontic treatment, ensuring no hidden fees.

If you’d like to discuss orthodontist vs dentist in more detail, please don’t hesitate to call our practice on 020 7018 2939.