What Is A Family Dentist?

A family dentist is much like a general dentist, except that they treat patients of all ages, meaning entire families. On the other hand, a general dentist may restrict their patients to a particular age group.

Family dentists and general dentists have a similar educational background – a graduate degree (3 years of undergrad) followed by 4 years of dental school. After finishing dental school, both dentists are qualified and licensed to treat patients.

The Benefits Of A Family Dentist

Family dentists play a huge role in taking care of not only your but also your family’s oral health. The fact that they are open to seeing patients of all ages offers huge advantages. Some of them are listed below –

Convenience

With a family dentist, you avoid wasting unnecessary time shuttling your family members from one dental office to another. Since a family dentist foresees patients of varying ages, all you have to do is separate appointments for separate people and bring them to the same establishment. Depending on the dentist’s schedule, you can also ask for multiple appointments in a day, saving you time and money.

And when you’re visiting one dental office over a period, you can be comfortable in the knowledge that you will receive similar quality treatment each time.

Versatile Treatment Options

Since family dentists cater to multiple ages, their offices also offer a wide range of dental treatments. From fluoride and sealants for kids, cavity restorations and extractions for adults, to prosthetic procedures for senior citizens – family dentists have them all. Additionally, a family dentist plays a huge role in preventive and intervention treatments. Since they’ll be examining your oral health at regular intervals, they find it easier to look out for any changes that might take place. And with numerous elective and emergency services under one roof, you and your family are set.

Access To Family History

When one dentist upholds the responsibilities of multiple members of the same family, it is much easier to keep a track of the family’s dental history. This plays a key role in monitoring a patient’s oral health since the dentist will know what to look out for, especially with issues related to genetic predispositions. For example, parents with a history of malocclusions and misaligned teeth might pass the same onto their child. This helps the dentist in planning preventative (orthodontic) measures for the same. Similarly, being aware of family histories also plays a huge role in other dental issues like cavities and oral cancer.

Important For Children

Family dentistry is pretty paramount when it comes to children. When a child visits the same dental practitioner as their parents and other members of the family, they develop a sense of trust. Witnessing adults deal with a dentist alleviates any anxieties they might be feeling, makes them relatively calmer, and more comfortable with the dentist. Furthermore, the familiarity they encompass with the dentist allows them to be more accepting of any treatment that is offered. And the cherry on top of the cake is when they see adults being responsible for their oral health, they start to take it seriously too. Moreover, since age is no bar with a family dentist, the child can continue visiting the same one as they transform into an adult.

Providing Dental Education

A family dentist contributes to the behavioral and nutritional counseling of not only adults but also children. While they are great dentists for older people, family dentists are experts at dealing with younger humans. It can be challenging to explain to a child to how best take care of their oral health. But when a child sits with their family and listens to the dentist explain how to prioritize dental health, they pay attention. And with regular visits, children become more familiar with their dentist and are more likely to listen to them and follow their instructions.

Treatments Provided By A Family Dentist

As we’ve mentioned earlier, you experience a plethora of services and treatments at your family dentist’s office. Think of them as a “one-stop-shop” for everything related to dentistry. Some of the procedures that family dentists offer are mentioned below.

  • Thorough examinations of the oral cavity and its hard and soft structures. The exams might also involve taking X-rays to understand the full picture.
  • Regular professional cleaning (every 6 months) to prevent plaque and calculus buildup, thereby preventing gum disease.
  • Parents are advised to bring in their infant as soon as the first tooth erupts which is usually around 6-7 months. Family dentists train parents on how to best care for the infant’s oral health. This involves teaching them how to finger brush over the new teeth and cleaning the tongue.
  • Younger kids get fluoride and sealant treatments as a preventative measure to keep cavities from forming.
  • Orthodontic intervention is another preventive measure popular among younger kids. Whether it is to correct a malocclusion or to break a habit (tongue thrusting, teeth grinding, thumb sucking, etc.), these are taken care of by various orthodontic appliances.
  • Composite and amalgam fillings are restorative services provided by a family dentist. These also include root canal therapies.
  • Family dentists also perform extractions on teeth that have decayed beyond the point of saving.
  • Tooth replacement options such as dental bridges, crowns, and implants are also a part of a family dentist’s services.
  • Other replacement options include dentures and other prostheses for senior citizens to rehabilitate the oral cavity.
  • At Norwood Dental, we also offer emergency dental services. So if you’re ever in a fix, all you have to do is get in touch with us.

There are many more treatment options available at Norwood Dental. Our family dentists and the dental staff make sure that you and your family are well cared for in our establishment. With top-notch experts and state-of-the-art facilities, Norwood Dental is your go-to dental office for all your dental needs. Call us at (952) 467 3518 to schedule an appointment today.

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