Most people maintain their oral health with regular visits to a general dentist. A general dentistry practice focuses on taking care of your entire mouth, including cleaning teeth, preventing cavities, and evaluating your teeth and gums for signs of problems or infections. A general dentist can provide diagnostic procedures such as x-rays that are needed in preparation for specialized care such as orthodontics, dental implants, or surgery to remove impacted wisdom teeth.
General dentists often perform routine procedures such as filling cavities and also the dentist or dental hygienist provides tooth cleaning or scaling. Your dentist also serves as a troubleshooter trained to identify early signs of gum disease, oral cancer, or temporomandibular joint disorders, and can coordinate your care with specialists, such as orthodontists if you need braces or endodontists if you need a root canal.
In addition, they provide patients with guidance and preventive health advice about how best to follow a regular oral health routine of twice-daily tooth brushing and daily flossing.
In addition, general dentists can provide many cosmetic procedures such as tooth-whitening, dental veneers, and dental bonding. Cosmetic dentistry is not currently a recognized dental specialty, but general dentists may have pursued additional education in order to perform cosmetic procedures such as bonding, teeth whitening, enamel shaping, and dental veneers. If you're interested in cosmetic procedures, start by talking to your general dentist. He or she can provide advice and refer you to a specialist if necessary.