Dentist or Orthodontist – Which Specialist is Right for you?

When it comes to your teeth and overall dental hygiene, it is so important to find the right specialist. Your mouth and teeth can be a significant determining factor in your overall health, so it is important to take care of all aspects of your oral hygiene. Depending upon what your dental needs are will determine which specialist you need to see. Here is are some of the differences between a dentist and an orthodontist and what each specialist can do for you.


A dentist is responsible for treating overall dental care. Some examples of this are routine check-ups, cleaning and filling cavities as well as x-rays and fixing or replacing problem teeth. A dentist can help replace crowns, do root canals and bridges. Dentists can also offer services for teeth whitening. If your dental needs fall outside of these broad categories, usually you will be referred to a more specialized individual in the dental field such as an orthodontist.


A dentist and an orthodontist both have similar backgrounds in education and have completed all of their credentials at dental school. Orthodontists however will have more education and specialized training around more serious dental issues. Usually you will be referred to an orthodontist to help correct problems such as an overbite or severe crowding. An orthodontist can also help if you have gaps in your teeth or are suffering from an under bite. Usually all of these ailments can be corrected over time using braces, wires, retainers and other corrective measures. Usually, monthly meetings between you and your orthodontist are scheduled to see what type of progress is being made and if any other corrective steps are needed.

Do I need both?

Even if you have been referred to an orthodontist for a more specialized approach to your oral health, you still need to schedule regular check-ups with your dentist. An orthodontist does not clean your teeth or fill and diagnose cavities. Regular check-ups with your dentist while you are wearing braces or any other corrective appliance will mean that you will have impeccable dental hygiene and a beautiful, white smile as well as straight teeth when you are finished with your orthodontist. Remember, overall dental hygiene is a real self-esteem booster, so take care of your smile.

Are You Looking for a Dentist?

Proper dental hygiene is so important for a multitude of reasons. Remember to visit your dentist regularly and maintain your check-ups. If you are in need of more specialized dental procedures, I am the premier orthodontist in the Squamish area and can provide all types of corrective measures for a multitude of dental concerns. Please stop by my office today for more information about the services that I can provide or visit my website at I look forward to working with you soon!