There are different types of dental fields these days. One of the common questions that dental patients bring forward is the difference between cosmetic and general dentistry. Without knowing the difference, you will be unsure of the kind of dental procedure to pursue when you have a particular dental issue. Here is a detailed view of the difference between cosmetic and general dentistry.
What is Cosmetic Dentistry?
Cosmetic dentistry aims at creating positive changes to the teeth and your smile. It is suitable for people with stained, worn out, chipped, misaligned, or misshapen teeth and helps them restore a better smile. Having an ideal smile improves the appearance and confidence of a person. That’s why you will find many people seeking this dentistry approach, even without severe dental problems.
Cosmetic dentistry comprises several options. Here are some options that an affordable Lomita dentist can provide.
Teeth whitening is the least expensive option that one can pursue. The dentist can handle it at home or at the clinic. Also, a dentist can recommend individual teeth whitening products to use at home.
These are custom-made shells made of resin or porcelain that are placed at the front surface of the teeth. The dentist removes about a half-millimeter of enamel to bond the thin shells to the front of the teeth. This will change the teeth’s length, size, and shape.
In this process, a durable plastic material (resin) is applied to the teeth and hardened with laser light to bond it to the teeth. The dentist will then trim, shape, and polish the teeth to maintain their natural appearance.
Inlays and Onlays
These types of cosmetic dentistry are referred to as indirect fillings. They are materials made out of composite, porcelain, or gold that are used to fill a decayed tooth. Inlays bond with the center of the tooth while Onlays cover numerous parts of the biting surface.
What is General Dentistry?
By definition, general dentistry can be described as a part of dentistry that involves the diagnosing, treatment, and management of the overall oral healthcare. In this kind of dentistry, the dentist focuses on preventive maintenance, which consists of the prevention of decay and diseases of the mouth, teeth, gum, and tongue. If the preventive measures are not enough, the general dentist will consider restorative dental care. This kind of dental care focuses on the repair of damages caused by tooth decay, diseases, or trauma around the mouth. Some of the general dentistry options that one can seek are:
- Dental implant
- Treatment of gum disease
- Oral surgery
- Nutrition counseling
- Root canal therapy
- Crown and bridges
- Home care instructions
The Major Differences
Both types of dentistry overlap each other since they utilize the oral part of the patient’s body. However, each has a different focus on the level of expertise needed for the dentist.
A cosmetic dentist would go beyond the restorative procedures and would want to achieve an individual’s perfect smile. This requires someone with expertise and a certain level of finesse in the delivery of services. On the other hand, general dentistry would not necessarily aim to achieve a remarkable appearance but would focus on fixing the dental problem affecting the patient.
Another difference that arises between the two types of dentistry is the extent of each procedure. Most cosmetic dentistry procedures appear to be quickly done compared to most general dentistry procedures. Services such as teeth cleaning can be done through the intervention of the patient without extensive involvement of the dentist. However, in restorative procedures such as the dental implant, there is a need for having a team of dental experts to help through the procedure since it is quite extensive. Also, most restorative procedures can go up to several months to be completed, while some of the cosmetic options would go for several days to be completed.
Finally, cosmetic dentistry is quite affordable, making it easy to find an affordable Lomita dentist to handle it. General dentistry is quite expensive and would probably cost a fortune to the person pursuing it. However, most dental insurance can afford to cover some of the costs incurred in general dentistry as opposed to cosmetic dentistry.
Deciding on What to Do
The kind of dentistry that you pick solely depends on the problem at hand. An excellent dentist should be able to advise you accordingly based on the oral problem that you have. It is also crucial to seek an affordable Lomita dentist to cut down your expenses and ensure an outstanding result as well.