I Don’t Need An Orthodontist, My Dentist Does Invisalign
Many dentists and orthodontists alike are trained in administering Invisalign to patients. This begs a crucial question: “Should I get Invisalign from a dentist or an orthodontist?” The answer lies in specialty. General dentists who are treating with Invisalign have a team of orthodontists thousands of miles away behind the scene creating the treatment plan for the patient. The dentist is relying heavily on the 2-3 additional years of schooling the orthodontists have undergone to create those treatment plans. While they are trained in the area of general dentistry, generally speaking, they have only undergone a two hour seminar on Invisalign. So, let’s look at the difference between a general dentist and an orthodontist before we answer the above question:
A General Dentist:
- Diagnosis, treats and manages overall oral healthcare needs including gum care, some root canals, crowns, fillings, veneers, bridges and preventative education.
- Total post undergraduate schooling is 4 years full time
- Specifically diagnosis, treats and manages the occlusion and facial contours as it relates to the jaw and teeth.
- Specific study of how to correct occlusions (the point where your teeth meet) in order to both be functional and aesthetically straight, while providing safe and healthy movement.
- Total post undergraduate schooling is 6-7 years full time (includes 2-3 additional years of specific study in orthodontics)
So what does that mean? It means that you should see an orthodontists for your Invisalign. And here is why:
- The orthodontist will be able to make sure that as your teeth move, they still fit together for a perfect bite.
- The orthodontist will be able to monitor how your jaw is reacting to the movement of your teeth and adjust your treatment as necessary.
- The orthodontist will be able to monitor your facial contour and profile to make sure it is not being negatively influenced by the movement and can make adjustments to the treatment plan as necessary.
All of these things an orthodontists spent years learning how to do. In the end, ask yourself: Would you see your general practitioner for setting your broken arm? Chances are, you’re going to want to see an orthopedist. In the same way, consider seeing an orthodontic specialist to get the best treatment for your teeth, bite and smile.