General dentistry is a branch of medicine involved in the care of teeth. It focuses on the diagnosis, prevention, study and treatment of a variety of disorders and conditions of the maxillofacial areas and associated structures in the human body, as well as the oral cavity. The oral cavity is simply a medical term for the mouth.
Individuals who practice general dentistry are called dentists. Dentists can go on to specialize in a variety of areas. Individuals in general dentistry work with a team including dental assistants, dental technicians, dental therapists and dental hygienists. There are some people who undermine the importance of general dentistry. In actual fact, this type of medical treatment is very important. Oral diseases are highly prevalent across the globe and has turned into one of the major public health problems. It’s more common in lower socio-economic groups but oral diseases can be found in all classes and in any area of the world.
General dentistry focuses on both preventative activities and therapeutic treatments. A large portion of dentistry is to prevent diseases like tooth decay and periodontal disease. Tooth decay, also called dental caries, is a bacterial infection f the tooth that destroys the organic matter of the tooth through the production of acids caused by food debris that collects on the surface of the tooth. Periodontal disease is a disease that affects one or more of the periodontal tissues. The most commonly seen periodontal diseases are gingivitis and periodontitis.
Other treatments completed in dentistry include teeth restoration such as fillings, removal or extraction of teeth that can’t be fixed, scaling teeth for the treatment of periodontal problems and treatment of abscessed teeth like a root canal.
Every country has specific regulations required of those who wish to pursue dentistry as a career. In the United States all dentists must have at least two years of undergraduate studies. Most go on to complete a full BA degree before pursuing specific dentistry training. After undergraduate training, anyone who want to get into general dentistry needs to go through four years of dental school. Once completed, the student will qualify as a Doctor of Dental Surgery or a Doctor of Dental Medicine. If the individual wishes to go further than general dentistry into a specialty, additional education is required.
General dentistry training allows a dentist to carry out most dental treatments. The most common ones like fillings, crowns, bridges, root canals, teeth extraction and periodontal therapy can be completed by an individual who has completed all the training for general dentistry. This type of training also allow the dentist to prescribe medications like antibiotics and sedatives. The dentist can also perform examinations, complete diagnoses and complete x-rays.
One of the main tasks of general dentistry is to encourage the prevention of oral diseases. Education is crucial and includes teaching patients about proper hygiene and regular check-ups.