Why Choose An Orthodontist?

Your orthodontic specialist is an expert in the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of dental and facial irregularities. Orthodontic specialists must first attend university, then complete a 4 year dental degree. They must then successfully complete an additional residency program of at least two to three academic years of advanced education in orthodontics. This advanced training includes such diverse studies as genetics, embryology, human growth and development, and biophysics. Only dentists with this advanced specialty education can present themselves as orthodontic specialists.

Appliances to straighten teeth require gentle, but constant force to reshape the mouth, aligning teeth and correcting bite irregularities over time. Although any dentist is qualified to repair damage to an individual tooth, the extra years of study that an orthodontist undergoes prepares the specialist to see to the health of your overall dental function. How your teeth come together affects your speech, your eating habits and sometimes your comfort. Misalignments cause pain and uneven wear on your teeth. A dentist can correct that wear after the fact, but an orthodontist can align your teeth to prevent it from occurring in the first place.

Most people associate orthodontia with braces, but traditional braces are only one possibility in the orthodontist’s set of tools. Invisible alignment devices can help perfect your smile. Orthodontists must also take jaw and face shape into consideration, sometimes using headgear or other appliances to bring the bones of the jaw into better and more functional alignment. Modern imaging techniques refine the practice of orthodontics, letting your orthodontist map a more precise course of correction. Orthodontists undergo continuing education to stay informed of these advances in the field.