What Is An Orthodontist and What Do They Do?

Have you been dreaming of a straight smile? The best way to improve the alignment and health of your smile is to get orthodontic treatment, such as braces or clear aligners. However, prospective patients may wonder before getting treatment: what is an orthodontist? And what does an orthodontist do?

If you want to learn more about orthodontic care, read on to discover how orthodontists work to improve your smile.

What Is An Orthodontist?

An orthodontist is a licensed dentist specializing in correcting the structure of the teeth and jaw. They diagnose bite malocclusions (like overbites, underbites, and crooked teeth), and treat them using orthodontic appliances (like braces and clear aligners). 

To become an orthodontist, one must get an undergraduate degree and attend four years of dental school to become a dentist. After that, the dentist must complete a two-year orthodontics program to become a certified orthodontist. Because orthodontists undergo rigorous training, you can trust them to align your smile.

What Does An Orthodontist Do?

Orthodontists diagnose, treat, and prevent bite malocclusions and dental irregularities. Orthodontists align your teeth and jaw with orthodontic appliances like clear aligners, metal braces, clear braces, and more. They treat patients of all ages, including children, teens, and adults. An orthodontist’s main focus is correcting your bite so you can enjoy a more functional and beautiful smile.

Portrait of smiling teenage girl with braces

The Differences Between Orthodontists & Dentists

Many new patients wonder, what is the difference between orthodontists and dentists? While both professions are in the field of dentistry, they focus on two different issues. Dentists are concerned with the general health of the teeth, gums, and jaw. Orthodontists are concerned with diagnosing, treating, and preventing bite malocclusions.

Another determining factor between orthodontists and dentists is the level of education and training they receive. While both must obtain an undergraduate degree and a four-year degree in general dentistry, orthodontists must complete an additional two-year orthodontic program and an orthodontic residency. This means that while most general dentists have 8 years of training, orthodontists have 10 or more years of rigorous education under their belt.

Should You See An Orthodontist?

There are many reasons to get orthodontic treatment! An aligned smile can boost your confidence and dental health. If you have any of the following issues, you should get a free consultation with us:

  • Overbite
  • Underbite
  • Crossbite
  • Crooked or crowded teeth
  • Difficulty chewing or speaking
  • Spaced-out teeth
  • Headaches and tooth pain
a group of young people smiling and standing next to each other

Get Premium Orthodontic Care with DiCiccio Freeman Orthodontics

So, what is an orthodontist, and what does an orthodontist do? Orthodontists specialize in correcting the structure of your bite using orthodontic appliances like braces and clear aligners. Because orthodontists are specialists, they are uniquely qualified to provide orthodontic treatment. 

When it comes to getting the smile of your dreams, you should trust an expert to give you the best results. Start your smile journey by scheduling a complimentary consultation with us today!