“Do I need a general dentist or a cosmetic dentist?” is a common question amongst Columbia, SC residents looking to improve their oral health and whiten and brighten their smiles. To help answer that question, let’s take a look at general dentistry vs. cosmetic dentistry in Columbia and learn what differences, if any, exist between the two.
If you’re looking for an affordable general dentist in Columbia, SC, who also performs cosmetic dentistry procedures, you’re in the right place. All people earning the degrees of DDS and DMD are general dentists, but many of those who hold a Doctorate of Dental Studies or a Doctorate of Dental Medicine degree are also cosmetic dentists.
Confused yet? Let’s put it this way: Virtually every dentist is a general dentist, but not all general dentists are cosmetic dentists. While “cosmetic dentistry” is not a specialty recognized by the American Dental Association (ADA), it is a highly specialized area of dentistry that requires extensive education and training. By the way, DDS and DMD are basically the exact same education; some dental schools issue DDS degrees while others issue DMDs.
In a nutshell, general dentists are primarily concerned with preventative care and the health and functionality of your teeth, gums, and mouth. Cosmetic dentists, on the other hand, are primarily focused on the aesthetics of your smile—making your smile as white, bright, and flawless as possible.
Your general dentist will likely perform cosmetic dentistry procedures because he or she has had the training required to do so, and your cosmetic dentist has probably practiced general dentistry for a number of years before performing the more artistic cosmetic dentistry. Think of general dentistry as more of a science and cosmetic dentistry as more of an art (with a whole lot of science thrown in!).