Do You Really Need To See An Orthodontist?
When it comes to orthodontic procedures, many people wonder whether it is necessary to see an orthodontist. Orthodontists are often more costly than dentists and this can cause patients to doubt whether it is necessary to visit an orthodontist or if they can simply receive the same treatment from a dentist. However, many orthodontic procedures can not be performed by dentists.
What is the difference between a dentist and an orthodontist?
Dentist's main focus is on oral health, especially that of the teeth and gums. They repair chipped or cracked teeth, treat gum diseases, repair cavities using fillings, and treat other oral health problems.
Orthodontists specialize in the alignment of teeth and jaws. Orthodontists can fit braces and fix overbites and under-bites in patients. Dentists usually refer patients with problems such as these to an orthodontist. Orthodontists are often compared to doctors who specialize in a specific field. To become an orthodontist, further studying is required after acquiring a dental qualification.
In some cases, dentists may also give their patients orthodontic appliances to fix specific problems. If these appliances break, an orthodontist needs to be contacted to repair them.
In short, patients visit a general dentist for any common oral issues. Orthodontists, on the other hand, are seen for any alignment issues that patients may experience.
What is Invisalign?
This treatment works similarly to braces in that it helps to straighten teeth that are misaligned. It can also help to correct an overbite or an underbite in patients. Patients are given clear plastic trays to place over the teeth. These trays can be worn for most of the day and will help to correctly align the teeth.
Invisalign makes everyday care such as flossing and brushing easy, as the trays can simply be removed. In contrast to braces that are fitted and cannot simply be removed, many patients prefer this treatment. However, Invisalign is generally only suitable for patients who have a mild or moderate misalignment. In more severe cases, braces are usually recommended.
A very important factor when it comes to Invisalign is that it is the only procedure that can be performed by both a dentist and an orthodontist. However, most dentists only have limited training when it comes to this procedure.
According to Invisalign reviews from patients, there are some drawbacks to this treatment. One of these drawbacks is that Invisalign prices can be quite expensive. What adds to these costs is the fact that many follow up treatments are required since Invisalign trays need to be upgraded every two weeks. The treatment usually takes 12 - 18 months to produce visible results. However, depending on the severity of a patient's misalignment, the treatment can take longer. Patients also have to exercise a lot of self-control as the trays should be kept in for about 22 hours a day to see optimal results.
Why should you visit an orthodontist?
Because the treatment is so expensive, many patients wonder whether having a dentist perform the treatment will reduce the costs. In most cases, this is not true. Even though Invisalign is more expensive than traditional braces, the costs of this treatment will likely be the same whether the patient is treated by an orthodontist or a dentist. Orthodontist's consultation fees may be slightly more expensive (since they offer specialized treatment), but most patients are happy to pay a slightly higher amount if it means receiving the best orthodontic care. Since it is not their area of expertise, dentists can only offer patients a limited amount of treatment when it comes to Invisalign. Choosing to visit an orthodontist for any misalignment issues is a great option for these reasons:
- Orthodontists have the right equipment
Since orthodontists only perform orthodontic procedures, they have the best equipment for these procedures, whereas dentists mostly focus on oral health procedures and equipment. Using the right equipment is very important when it comes to ensuring success with orthodontic procedures. Orthodontists often make use of 3D impressions with digital scanners. This analysis is more comfortable for patients because it does not involve physically touching and analyzing the mouth.
- Orthodontists are more experienced in orthodontic procedures
Since dentists do not usually perform orthodontic procedures, using a dentist for these kinds of treatments will not always ensure the best possible orthodontic care. When dentists are trained to perform Invisalign treatments, they are often only trained to do certain treatments. Orthodontists are highly trained to perform all types of Invisalign treatments. Many of these also have years of experience in their career. For this reason, they are simply more suitable and qualified to perform orthodontic work.
- Orthodontists will give a professional opinion
Having studied further to gain extra knowledge and specialize in the field, orthodontists will be able to give a more reliable and professional opinion when it comes to teeth or jaw misalignment issues. They see many patients with similar problems every day and can use this exposure to find suitable solutions. Orthodontists practice their skills daily and with more experience than dentists, they are able to perfect their skills in this field.
Choosing between a dentist and an orthodontist to perform orthodontic procedures comes down to a few factors such as availability, accessibility, and sometimes costs. Even though some dentists will do Invisalign treatments for their patients, most are more likely to refer their patients to professional, qualified orthodontists. Dentists may be able to perform these treatments, but orthodontists are much better equipped to do so.
Because of the aesthetic nature of orthodontic work, patients need to be placed in the most capable hands. This increases the chances that they will achieve the results they are hoping for. It is not necessary to see an orthodontist for treatments like Invisalign. However, when it comes to any kind of orthodontic procedures, being treated by an orthodontist instead of a dentist (if possible) is a preferred option.
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