What Does an Orthodontist Do?

Posted on October 3, 2022

Orthodontists are dental professionals who work on preventing, diagnosing, and treating dental and mandibular misalignments. They provide a variety of treatment procedures to straighten crooked teeth, repair poor bites, and properly align the jaws. While orthodontists are best recognized for teeth straightening, they may also help with uncomfortable and uneven bites, tooth movement resulting from bad habits like thumb sucking, and even mild sleep apnea. If you’re wondering about an orthodontist’s job, read on to understand what the orthodontic profession entails.

What Differentiates an Orthodontist and a Dentist?

Initially, orthodontists and dentists get much of the same schooling and training. Both will complete an undergraduate education and four years of dental school. When a dental practitioner wishes to pursue orthodontics, they must complete additional training in tooth alignment. Patients with bite problems are referred to an orthodontist because their knowledge extends beyond basic dental care, such as general exams of their teeth and gums which a dentist typically performs.

Why Do People Seek Orthodontic Treatment?

For misaligned teeth, many people crave orthodontic treatment. Orthodontic therapy is believed to help 50%-75% of patients, according to the American Association of Orthodontists. Correcting the grin can boost self-esteem and alleviate chewing discomfort. Uncorrected bites, on the other hand, can result in abnormal tooth wear patterns, producing dental pain. Although crooked teeth do not impair one’s ability to eat or communicate, many individuals value having a beautiful smile. When you meet someone for the first time, their initial impression can be largely impacted by your smile. It’s best to invest in a smile that draws crowds!

How Does An Orthodontist Plan Treatment?

A skilled orthodontist evaluates the patient’s teeth and jaws to identify what needs to be fixed to provide the finest smile possible. An orthodontist will likely take X-rays and imprints of your teeth when planning treatment to fully understand how your teeth are misaligned. The orthodontist develops a practical strategy using the X-ray results and communicates it to their patients so they can prepare themselves for the experience ahead and the duration it may last.

How Do Orthodontists Treat Their Patients?

Depending on the patient’s desire and the amount of therapy required, patients are equipped with either ceramic or metallic braces. The braces are intended to gradually apply enough pressure to your teeth to shift them into proper alignment.   Orthodontists can also give Invisalign for discreet orthodontic treatment. After your bite has been corrected, the braces will be removed, and you may be required to wear a retainer to prevent your teeth from returning to their previous position.

If you’ve got crooked teeth or tooth misalignment, seeking orthodontic treatment can help correct issues with your teeth. Do you seek orthodontic treatment? Give Four Corners Orthodontics & Dental a call today to schedule an appointment with an orthodontist!