Whether you are 65 or a young 5 year old, oral health has a big part in our lives. The state of our teeth, gums, and all things inside the devouring cave called the mouth, makes the oral health. And the unintended (or intended?) negligence of oral health that resulted from the pandemic situation could have possibly left us with big problems that will reveal themselves in time. Dentists and oral hygienists expect a big bombshell of patients to appear when all this settles.
But when it comes to the field of dentistry, how do we know whom to go to? With so many advancements in the field, there’s a unique professional for every aspect of oral health, similar to how we see distinctive specialists in medicine and surgery.
For instance, we have general dentists that largely work with the conditions and diseases of the oral cavity. Then we have periodontists that specialize in the diseases of gums and the bones supporting the teeth (they also do the scaling). The endodontists provide relief when we have tooth pain and are skilled to perform root canal treatments. And let’s not forget the prosthodontists that help us when we are all frail and need artificial teeth to eat. The oral hygienists are always there to assist the dentist and educate the patient on preventive oral care.
Another emerging field is cosmetic dentistry that evolves around refining the visuals of the smile and the oral cavity, such as using veneers and bonding. Don’t confuse this with orthodontics, where the experts use braces to fix misaligned teeth and jaws.
Then come the surgeons into play; the oral and maxillofacial surgeons who are responsible for complicated extractions, implants, and reconstructive surgeries of the whole oral area and the face.
Dentistry is a pretty cool field with so many different moving parts!