What Is The Difference Between A Dentist And A Maxillofacial Surgeon?
Posted on 9/19/2022 by Dr McMurray
Visiting an oral health care provider is a good way to ensure healthy gums, teeth, and jaws. However, when you have oral concerns, it may be challenging to know whether to contact a general dentist or oral and maxillofacial surgeon. Understanding the difference between the two dental professionals will help you choose one that fits your current needs.
What Does a Dentist and Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon Treat?
General dentists provide primary care for oral health. This involves regular teeth cleaning, filling cavities, and taking X-rays. They also focus on offering recommendations on how to prevent dental problems and improve oral health. When you have teeth issues, you can consider a general dentist for restoration. This involves repairing damaged teeth caused by tooth decay, diseases, or trauma. The dentist can restore the damaged teeth through root canal therapy, fillings, or crowns.
Maxillofacial surgeons, also known as oral surgeons, receive specialized training that focuses on treating the face, jaw, and mouth. An oral surgeon receives four to six more years of training than a general dentist. This helps patients to receive the best dental treatment. From minor to more complex surgeries, you can expect good results because the oral surgeon has extensive education. They can perform teeth extraction, jaw realignment, repairing soft tissues in the mouth, and fixing implants.
Should You Consider a Dentist or an Oral Surgeon?
Both the dentist and maxillofacial surgeon will help to improve your oral health. You can choose one depending on your condition and budget. For simple procedures such as cleaning and routine exams, a dentist can meet your needs. You can also consider a dentist for emergency dental care.
But you may need to consider a maxillofacial surgeon for dental issues that exceed the dentist's expertise. These are professional dentists who treat various conditions such as sleep apnea, temporomandibular joint disorders, and neck cancer.
A maxillofacial surgeon and a dentist are in the same profession. However, their level of education and scope of clinical practice differs. So, choosing a dentist or an oral surgeon comes down to your treatment needs.
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