The world of dentistry is bigger than most people think. When you ask someone what a dentist does they are probably going to give answers in the line of: extract teeth, replace teeth, and treat dental diseases.
Dental care is a multi-faceted field with three distinct levels.
There is preventative dentistry which a good number of people go through.
Restorative and cosmetic dentistry are more complicated areas of practice.
The approaches of these three are very unique and different.
Thus dentistry is about so much more than just visiting your dentist for that routine medical check-up.
What is the difference between these three treatment types though?
Preventative dentistry is basically about taking care of the teeth in a bid to keep them healthy and avoid the need for future corrective procedures.
Preventative dental care involves maintenance of good oral health in various forms.
There is brushing of teeth on a daily basis.
There is also flossing of teeth and regular dental check-ups.
The goal here is to prevent dental diseases from developing. It minimizes the risk of developing issues such as gingivitis, periodontal disease, cavities, enamel loss and so forth.
It can also prevent other conditions that are not necessarily oral such as diabetes, respiratory disease and cancers.
With a good preventive strategy in place, you are not only able to take care of your teeth but the whole body in general.
Just as the name suggests, this is about restoring the body.
Dental procedures are sometimes necessary to treat decay or damage in the mouth.
The aim here is to correct dental problems that are in existence and restore the appearance as well as the function of the teeth.
Some of the common reasons why you might want to seek restorative treatments include: tooth decay, cracked or chipped teeth, missing teeth, misaligned teeth and gaps in teeth.
The dentist may recommend crowns, bridges, dentures, dental implants and so forth.
This one, unlike restorative dentistry, is not necessary meant to correct an existing problem.
It seeks to improve the appearance of the teeth. It is not compulsory.
The teeth are fully functional and there is no need for any procedure to be done but only to improve the appearance.
With the developments in technology, cosmetic dentistry continues to grow in leaps and bounds.
In summary, there is one thing that is worth noting that with a proper preventive strategy, there might be no need for restorative and cosmetic procedures. Good dental care evidently protects from more than just oral disease. Preventative dentistry can prevent the need for the other levels of dental care as well. Your teeth will be healthy. You will not have damaged teeth to be restored, or diseases to be treated. Therefore, you should work to develop a good medical strategy- your dentist will help you with this.