Dental practice, more commonly referred to as dentistry, refers to the work done by dentists in regard to prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of disease with respect to teeth and other parts of the oral cavity. It is an important and widespread practice for a number of reasons.
One of the main reasons is that poor oral health can lead to preventable health complications later in life, and another is that a pearly white smile featuring straight teeth is generally seen as attractive and desirable. There are different types of a dental practice, and though all dentists are required to have a certain degree of education, they often have their own specializations.
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Why There is a Need for Dental Practice
The importance of oral health cannot be understated. Ignoring one’s oral health can result in conditions such as heart disease and diabetes, which are potentially fatal. Dental practices are able to inform their patients on how to better maintain their oral health as well as offer treatment services to decrease a patient’s risk of getting a preventable disease.
Regular dentist appointments allow dentists to notice and deal with any dental diseases in their early stages. This saves patients from potentially more expensive treatments they might have to get if they were to get their disease treated at a later stage.
Earlier treatments are also generally faster because the problem is not as severe. Though it is not what is usually associated with it, dental practices include the head, neck, and jaw muscles, the tongue, salivary glands, and the head’s nervous system on top of a patient’s teeth and gums.
With dental practices now more available to the general public than ever before, there has been an increase in people seeking dental treatment for aesthetic purposes.
Current beauty standards tend to praise white, straight teeth, which can be achieved with dental care. Having a pleasant smile can improve one’s self-esteem as well as make one appear friendlier and more approachable. A smile that is conventionally attractive is beneficial as it opens up opportunities that would have been otherwise unavailable to someone with low self-confidence.
Types of Dental Practice
All dentists must pass a rigorous exam and obtain an official license before they can practice in order to affirm their competence. Must have Bachelor of Science degrees, and many also have Master’s degrees in public health. However, beyond this, there are a number of different paths a dentist can take in the field of dentistry.
This branch of dentistry deals with restoring parts of teeth that are damaged or no longer work. Reasons for this might include disease, trauma, or abnormal development. Specialists in this field include endodontists who specialize in root canals and oral surgeons. The best known, probably, are orthodontists who specialize in adjusting teeth. They are the ones responsible for braces and other similar treatments.
This branch of dentistry focuses on the oral care of children. It includes everything from mouth cleanings to teaching children how to take care of their teeth to helping children deal with cavities. While general dentists normally also treat children, pediatric dentists are preferred for their age-specific knowledge.
This branch of dentistry deals with making sure an oral system’s chewing mechanisms stay in good condition, and this can be done by strengthening the mouth against possible damage and disease.
This branch of dentistry deals with replacing missing teeth or other mouth or jaw structures.
Choosing a Dental Practice
When choosing a dental practice, most have the option between privately-owned practices, businesses owned by the supervising dentist, and corporate dental offices, businesses owned by corporations and whose dentists are employees. The quality of care offered between the two are about the same considering most dentists have to go through the same process to become licensed, but at privately-owned dental practices, clients and their dentists are able to build a more personal connection.
Not all dental offices offer the same type of care. The best ones offer comprehensive dental care and prevention, and this means they are dedicated to ensuring optimal oral health. Therefore, their practices include addressing gum, tooth, and occlusal diseases as well as promoting good oral habits and scheduling regular appointments to prevent diseases.
The next level of care is maintenance dentistry, which although is effective, does not involve a dentist or patient seeking in-depth treatment. Repair focused practice and emergency/limited care practice only focus on either fixing teeth that are in already poor condition and do not take into consideration the prevention of oral health issues at all.