Family dentistry is a field which provides services related to the overall maintenance of tooth health and oral hygiene. Though the type of practice is often interchanged with that of general dentistry, there are a few slight differences between the two.
Some of them restrict their services to focus solely on certain age groups. For example, pediodontists specialize in the treatment of young children. This is in contrast of family dentists who generally care for a wide variety of individuals.
Due to the fact that this type of physician is considered to be the first line of defense against dental abnormalities, it is primarily viewed as a preventative field. It is highly recommended that individuals visit a dentist for a checkup a minimum of 2 times per year. These checkups provide routine cleanings which prevent tooth decay and eliminate plaque buildup. Fluoride treatments are also provided to help coat the teeth as a measure against tooth decay. Continued checkups can easily help with the detection of oral health issues long before they become serious problems.
During some visits, the dentist may take X-rays to aid in the detection of cavities and other oral issues. If a cavity is detected, you physician can provide treatment by means of a filling prior to the development of a more serious problem that could result in a more costly and painful procedure.
After earning an undergraduate degree and acing the Dental Admission Test, prospective dentists are forced to complete a rigorous three to five year program that prepares them for a position in the field of family dentistry. Prior to graduation, students must pass the National Board Dental Examination.
Once out of dental school, the vast majority of students choose to move into practice. Still, others opt to pursue various post graduate training in a designated specialty.
There are nine specialty fields:
2. Dental Health
4. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
5. Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology
6. Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology
The amount of study required varies depending of the type of specialty being pursued.
While family dentists are generally associated with preventative and restorative practices, many end up taking additional training in order to provide various cosmetic services such as veneers and teeth whitening. General dentists dealing with cosmetic procedures in addition to their regular practices tend to refer to themselves as family and cosmetic dentists.
Source by Anna Woodward