Dentistry is defined by the American Dental Association as “the evaluation, diagnosis, prevention and/or treatment (nonsurgical, surgical or related procedures) of diseases, disorders and/or conditions of the oral cavity, maxillofacial area and/or the adjacent and associated structures and their impact on the human body.” It is practiced by general dentists, who are highly trained and educated (they receive at least three years of undergraduate education, plus another four years of dental school) before they can be officially licensed. Dental specialists, such as orthodontists, periodontists, or oral surgeons, must receive additional post-graduate training.
General dentists provide a variety of services. Besides routine cleanings and general exams, they also provide:
Patients of all ages can receive treatment from general dentists. It’s recommended that children have their first visit to the doctor shortly after the emergence of their first tooth, or before their first birthday. Pediatric dentists specialize in treatment for children, but general dentists also provide the necessary services to all ages. Their work deals with overall oral health, diagnosing and treating oral disorders. If specific oral health needs must be addressed, they can refer patients to a dental specialist, such as for oral surgery or endodontic treatment.
In addition to general dentistry services, some general dentists also provide sleep apnea and TMJ treatment. They may be able to diagnose the issue in-house and provide treatments for the disorders. Research has shown that oral health is closely related to overall health – problems in the mouth can be indications of issues elsewhere in the body. This is one reason why it’s highly encouraged to visit the dentist regularly.
Dentists work closely with hygienists, who perform procedures such as teeth cleanings. Together, they educate their patients on how to properly care for their teeth and overall health.
If you would like to schedule an appointment at Campbell & Willaims Family Dental, contact our office for more information, or book your next appointment online now!