The Most Common Misconceptions About Orthodontists

Most people know exactly what a dentist does, but things are a little murkier when it comes to orthodontists! This confusion can result in some common misconceptions about what an orthodontist is and how they straighten smiles. We’re proud to offer world-class care to Canton and Alliance families here at Dietrich Orthodontics. But what does that actually mean? Keep reading below as we clear up some myths about orthodontists and explain how Dr. Dietrich can improve your oral health! 

Dentists and orthodontists are interchangeable

Perhaps the biggest misconception about orthodontists is that they’re interchangeable with a general dentist. Both careers begin with dental school, and both professions want to help patients maintain a healthy mouth, but there are quite a few differences between the two. If you’re concerned about tooth pain or suspect a cavity, a dentist should be your first stop! These dental health professionals can treat aching teeth, decay, cavities, gum disease, and other common health problems. They also offer checkups and professional cleaning services to keep your mouth in tip-top shape. 

Orthodontists have a more specialized focus. Most of the patients we see on a daily basis have been referred by dentists or are experiencing orthodontic issues like crooked teeth or a misaligned bite. These problems go beyond the cosmetic appearance of a patient’s smile—when left untreated, they can lead to symptoms that may affect everyday tasks such as eating, speaking, and even digesting food properly! An orthodontist like Dr. Dietrich has been trained to identify and correct bad bites and other misalignments using braces, clear aligners, or other appliances. 

Dentists and orthodontists receive the same education and training 

As noted above, both dentists and orthodontists begin their careers in dental school. However, after graduation, orthodontists take a different path by embarking on several extra years of specialized training and education. These programs are highly competitive, and only the top students in any dental school’s graduating class are accepted. They usually last about 2-3 years, with a full-time focus on identifying and correcting orthodontic issues to create a healthier, more balanced smile. Once this rigorous residency program has been completed, a dentist will become an orthodontist.

The Most Common Misconceptions About Orthodontists

The specialized treatment dentists and orthodontics provide are the same

Dentists and orthodontists both have a solid education, with plenty of training and experience when it comes to caring for smiles! However, an orthodontist like Dr. Dietrich will have more years of specialized education. Although some dentists provide basic orthodontic care, like clear aligners or braces for minor misalignments, orthodontists specialize in identifying and correcting certain issues. 

Orthodontists are also the best choice for helping patients avoid any unnecessary complications. They’re more likely to notice the small things that a general dentist may overlook and will only recommend the appropriate treatment plan for you. This means treatment times are reduced, there’s less chance of complications developing, and the treatment plan itself will be time- and cost-effective.

If your family dentist offers orthodontic care, you may be considering them as an option. This is understandable, as most of us prefer the things we’re familiar with over the unknown. But before you move forward with orthodontic treatment by your dentist, consider what an experienced orthodontist will be able to provide you. This includes: 

  • traditional metal and clear ceramic braces
  • a customized treatment plan created just for you based on your unique smile, specific needs, and desired results
  • more efficient treatments and visits, since orthodontics is the main focus
  • the best possible outcome for your smile, particularly if your case is complex or severe

At Dietrich Orthodontics, our only focus is orthodontic care and treatment. That’s why we put so much time and work into perfecting what we do! Dr. Dietrich performs teeth straightening procedures daily most weeks, and our team keeps up to date on the latest in industry practice. We also attend continuing education courses regularly. Both of our offices are equipped with the most current equipment, allowing us to provide every patient with only the best in customized orthodontic care.

Orthodontists only treat teens

If you tend to imagine a teen in braces whenever you hear the term “orthodontics,” you’re not alone! While it’s true that tweens and teens make up a significant percentage of orthodontic patients, treatment can be beneficial to patients of all ages. In addition to teens, we work with young children and adults in our Canton and Alliance offices. We’ve seen firsthand that there’s no age limit for achieving a straighter smile and better oral health!

The Most Common Misconceptions About Orthodontists

Trust your smile to the experts at Dietrich Orthodontics

Dietrich Orthodontics is proud to offer patients of all ages a rewarding orthodontic experience from the first appointment to the last. Since our sole specialty is orthodontics, you can trust that we have the training and expertise necessary to help you achieve the most exceptional results! You’ll also benefit from our personalized treatment plans and world-class care. 

If you’re ready to take the first step towards a healthier smile, our team would love to meet you! When you schedule a FREE consultation, you’ll receive an orthodontic evaluation with Dr. Dietrich. Following this exam, he’ll provide you with a diagnosis and outline a customized treatment plan just for you. Don’t worry—this is a no-pressure appointment! Even if you decide not to pursue orthodontic treatment immediately, we’ll be happy to answer any questions you might have to help you make an informed decision.

There’s never been a better time to get the beautiful smile you deserve, so get in touch today to schedule your free consultation with our expert team!