Dentists and orthodontists are not distinctly separate spheres—rather each works together on the journey to deliver patients their best smile. It is the partnership with dentists that makes it so much easier to keep up with our patient’s health and move forward in the treatment process.
What’s the difference?
There is a common misconception between the role of a dentist versus an orthodontist. One doesn’t take the place of the other—we strive to work together to ensure the overall health and function of a person’s mouth. While a dentist will clean your teeth and check for cavities, an orthodontist is focused on moving teeth into proper alignment.
Working with a patient’s dentist is so important to us. We are continually looking for ways to stay up-to-date and connected with dentists before, during, and after procedures. If a patient doesn’t have a dentist when they see us, we refer them to someone we feel is the best fit for both their goals and their budget. It is good for us as orthodontists to know that our patients are staying healthy for positive oral and overall health.
The importance of involving your dentist
We always like to ask a patient’s dentist their opinion of their orthodontic journey and progress. Your dentist may have specific insights about the patient’s condition or growth pattern that the orthodontist may be unaware. For example, if you have a problematic tooth or any gum issues, it is important for a dentist to share this information. It’s also good to receive a dentist’s feedback while the appliances are in place to know if any refinements are needed!
Keep your dentist in the loop
The name of a patient’s dentist is a crucial piece of information to an orthodontist. This allows us to open a line of communication to address specific concerns, ensuring that we are aware of any oral health concerns and can properly meet all the patient’s needs. When a dentist and orthodontist both share opinions, working together to give our patients the healthy, straight smile they deserve is simple. At the heart of it, the patient wins.
While at the surface it may seem like dentists and orthodontists perform different duties, at the core, we both have the same goal—to ensure our patients have positive oral health. For more information on starting your orthodontic journey, visit our website.