What is orthodontics?

Orthodontics is a specialist branch of dentistry that focuses on correcting the alignment of a patient’s teeth and jaws.

An orthodontist is a fully trained dentist who has had further years of training to specialise in the field of orthodontics. An orthodontist knows how best to straighten and move your teeth. They can also advise you on the best orthodontic treatment for you and your smile.

What training does an orthodontist have?

Orthodontics is skilled specialist work. Becoming a qualified orthodontist in the UK takes years of training and clinical experience including five years of dental school, four years of postgraduate training and three years of full-time specialist training!

Orthodontists have extensive knowledge of using appliances such as braces, clear aligner trays and retainers, so they can recommend the best kind of appliance to meet every individual patient’s treatment needs – creating beautiful and healthy smiles for children, teens and adults.

What is Orthodontics

Dentist or orthodontist?

Dentists and orthodontists are both highly trained oral healthcare specialists, but they concentrate on different aspects of your dental health. It's important to go to the right one, depending on your oral health needs.

For regular dental check-ups, teeth cleaning, and fillings, your dentist is the specialist to go to. Some dentists, like our lovely Neil, even take a special interest in orthodontics, and can help you plan your journey to a straighter smile.

If you have a complex orthodontic case, and want fully customised treatment, it’s best to consult an orthodontist. Your orthodontist has the specialist knowledge and experience for even the most difficult orthodontic issues.

Together, your orthodontist and dentist can offer you a complete dental health service, and at Beam Orthodontics, we work closely with our referring dentists to ensure you have a coordinated treatment plan and approach.

Dentist or Orthodontist

Orthodontist Dentist
Qualifications & Memberships
Bachelor of Dental Surgery (5 years)
Master of Orthodontics (M.Orth) (3 years)
General Dental Council Registered Specialist in Orthodontics
Membership of professional orthodontic bodies, eg. British Orthodontic Society
Treatments & Services
General 6-month check up
Fillings & extractions
Cleaning & polishing
Advises on overall oral health of teeth and gums
Fitting of orthodontic appliances, such as braces & Invisalign aligners Some general dentists may fit braces and
Invisalign® but they are not specialists in orthodontics
Experience & training
Is specifically trained in the movement of teeth and bite issues
Recommends and treats patients after assessing overall facial profile
Uses the latest in orthodontic technology for the benefit of patients
Attends regular training on developments in the orthodontic industry
Is a member of The Invisible Orthodontist (TIO) Network Not all orthodontists are members of TIO but those who are demonstrate further commitment to promoting invisible orthodontic treatment.

Source: The Invisible Orthodontist

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