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Orthodontist vs. Dentist

The Difference Between an Orthodontist and a Dentist

Knowing the difference between an orthodontist and dentist is very important. Both orthodontists and dentists strive daily to help patients improve their oral health and smiles. While dentists focus on the overall health of the mouth and individual teeth, orthodontists focus on the correction of your smile and occlusion (another word for your bite). This works best when orthodontists and dentists work together with you to achieve your most confident and healthy smile!
The Similarities and Differences

Both dentists and orthodontists acquire an advanced doctoral degree after college in order to be able to practice dentistry. However, orthodontists also continue with additional education after dental school. An orthodontic residency requires an additional 2-3 years just devoted to diagnosing and treating patients to correct their bites and smiles.
With a dentist, you can get treated for a wide range of dental needs including: dental cleanings, fillings for cavities, dental crowns, root canals, extractions or even get your teeth whitened! Some dentists do include simple orthodontic treatments in the list of what they offer. But, with an orthodontist, your treatment will be focused on your bite and smile.
There are many types of bites, misaligned teeth and jaws. Each treatment plan is individualized for our patients. That’s why we begin screening and monitoring patients as early as age seven, to begin intervention at the correct time for each person.
Why Does It Matter?
We want to help each patient understand the difference between an orthodontist and a dentist so that you will know what setting will be the best one to address different concerns. Your dentist and orthodontist work as a team to achieve your greatest and healthiest smile. Each plays an important, but different part. With two professionals working together, you can achieve a straighter smile and improved bite as well as a healthier and cleaner smile! With straighter teeth, it becomes much easier to maintain oral health by releasing food particles and bacteria that tend to be trapped!
Now That You Know
Do you have questions on the types of treatments we offer? Are you looking for your child, or even yourself? Check out more of our amazing blogs at or see our treatment page at
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