In dentistry, we have several specialties, from orthodontics to prosthodontics. But, before you can see these dental specialists, you are first examined by a general dentist. These are your first point of contact and your primary provider. In this post, we answer some of the common questions about general dentists.
Who are General Dentists?
General dentists are your primary dental provider, and they offer services to people of all ages. Unlike most dental specialties, general dentists are uniquely oriented to provide preventive dental services, though they also have curative and restorative services.
What Services do They Offer?
General dentists provide an array of services that are geared to help maintain your oral health.
- Preventive dental services
These services are designed to maintain good oral health by preventing dental problems. These services include:
- Dental exams and cleaning. Routine dental cleaning and examination are recommended for preventing dental problems. Remember, most oral health conditions develop without symptoms. By the time you recognize the problem, it is well advanced and can damage your teeth. With dental exams, the dentist can detect dental problems and start the treatment on time. The dentists use x-rays and other diagnostic tools to examine your dental condition. Professional dental cleaning, on the other hand, removes plaque buildup from underneath the gum line.
- Fluoride treatments. Fluoride is nature’s cavity fighter. The mineral is found in toothpaste, food, water, and mouth rinses. It strengthens the enamel and makes it hard enough to withstand dental cavities. Fluoride also helps to reverse mild dental cavities.
- Dental sealants. These are plastic coatings applied to the teeth to shield them from bacterial attack. The coatings can be applied on all teeth, but are best suitable for the back teeth. Dental sealants are applied on the permanent teeth and can last for ten years with proper care.
- Pediatric dental crowns. These are similar to sealants but are applied to the primary teeth. The crowns also help to protect the primary teeth, which hold the space for the permanent ones.
- Restorative services
These are services designed to replace damaged teeth and restore the integrity of your teeth and smile.
- Dental fillings. When you have mild dental decay, the dentist will remove the affected area and replace it with a filling. Dental fillings are available in different types, such as amalgam, gold, and porcelain crowns.
- Dental bridges. These are used to replace missing teeth. Bridges have two crowns that are fixed on the adjacent teeth to anchor the false teeth. The bridges can last for 15 years with proper care.
- Dental implants. These also replace the lost teeth. However, they are metal screws that are surgically fixed on the jaw bone to support the artificial teeth. Implants offer a long-term solution and also prevent bone loss. But, you need to have sufficient bone support for the implants to be fixed.
- Cosmetic services
Most general dentists offer cosmetic services that are designed to improve your smile.
- Teeth whitening. Our teeth can discolor due to food and lifestyle habits. When they do, a whitening procedure will remove the stains and restore the brightness on your teeth.
- Veneers. These are tooth-like shells fixed on the enamel to restore the appearance, color, size, and shape of the teeth. Veneers are used to fix a range of dental imperfections such as severe teeth discoloration, chipped and cracked teeth.
- Dental bonding. This is done when you have cracked and chipped teeth. The bonding process is fast and can last for 30 minutes. However, the resin used is not long-lasting and as such can only be used to fix minor dental problems.
What can You Expect at Your Dental Checkup?
The ADA recommends getting routine dental checkups twice a year. When you come to the office, our dentist will perform a comprehensive dental checkup. X-rays may be done among other diagnostic tools to check the condition of your teeth. Next, your teeth are professionally cleaned to remove plaque. After the procedure, the dentist may recommend further treatments based on the condition of your teeth.
Schedule an Appointment
Visit Quad Dental for more information on our general dentistry services and how they can improve your oral health.