Is Cosmetic or General Dentistry the Right Treatment for You?

General and cosmetic dentistry are common kinds of dentistry that aim to resolve oral issues. While both can help maintain a healthy mouth, each has treatment options and factors to consider. Cosmetic dentistry focuses on enhancing your teeth look, while general dentistry concentrates on the overall care and upkeep of your oral health.

General, Cosmetic, and Restorative Dentist: A Brief Overview

A general dentist is the one who you often visit for routine check-ups and preventive care to help with dental health. They may also handle gum disease or temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder. Moreover, they provide education about gums, flossing, and brushing.

On the other hand, a cosmetic dentist concentrates on the aesthetic aspects of dentistry. These include tooth whitening, porcelain veneers, dental implants, and even full-mouth reconstruction. While general dentists can provide some of these services, cosmetic dentists have further training and usually focus on delivering more advanced solutions for perfect teeth and smiles.

Restorative dentistry is an additional field in the industry that often overlaps with both general and cosmetic dentistry. This specialty focuses on restoring missing and damaged teeth through several treatments, such as crowns, root canals, bridges, and dental implants. Sometimes, a general or cosmetic dentist can perform restorative treatments, but it’s recommended to see a specialized restorative dentist for the most effective outcomes.

When Do You Need Cosmetic Dentistry?

Here are some reasons you might need cosmetic dentistry:

1. Severe Teeth Discolorations and Stains

Teeth discolorations and stains can be caused by cigarette smoking, stain-causing food and drinks like red wine and coffee, and certain medications. If your teeth stains are severe, you might want to consider professional whitening treatments or veneers.

2. Visible Gaps Between Teeth

If gaps between your teeth make it difficult to smile confidently, a reliable cosmetic dental treatment can help. Depending on the gap’s size and shape, your dentist may recommend bonding, crowns, bridges, or orthodontic treatments like traditional metal braces or Invisalign.

3. Chipped or Broken Teeth

Having broken or chipped teeth can be both an aesthetic and functional concern. You can conceal these flaws with crowns or porcelain veneers. If there’s any decay present, fillings may also be suggested.

When Do You Need General Dentistry?

Below are some reasons why you might need general dentistry:

1. Preventive Care

Regular dental visits are vital for determining and preventing oral concerns before they become a bigger issue. During these check-ups, your dentist will usually conduct cleanings, inspect the health of your teeth and gums, take X-rays, administer fluoride treatments, and look for signs of decay or any other issues.

2. Restorative Treatments

If you have serious toothaches or infections that can’t be solved with preventive care alone, restorative treatments, like endodontic therapy (root canals), may be required. Restorative treatments include fillings, crowns, bridges, inlays/onlays, dental implant surgery, or dentures. You can look here if you need a set of dentures today.

What Is the Price Difference Between General and Cosmetic Dentistry?

Cosmetic dentistry costs are usually higher than general dentistry, as it requires more specialized treatment and technology. Also, they’re often not covered by insurance, as they are considered elective treatments.

However, prices may vary greatly depending on the following factors:

  • The intricacy of the treatment, such as if you need anesthesia
  • Types of materials used
  • Your dentist and location
  • Whether you have dental insurance or not
  • If you require extra treatment like sinus lift or bone grafting

Final Thoughts

Before committing to a particular treatment, you must be aware of your dental circumstances and needs. Your first step is to book an initial consultation with your dentist so that they can evaluate your gums, teeth, and jaw. They will help you choose which type of dentistry is best for you.