Preventative Dental Care

The Difference Between General Dentistry and Cosmetic Dentistry


The Difference Between General Dentistry and Cosmetic Dentistry

The recent medical up-gradation has seen various fields of dental healthcare. There were not many fields of dentistry a few decades back, but now there are different types of dentistry that can cure plenty of oral healthcare issues. These types of dentistry can confuse patients, so it is essential to understand the differences between them.  Understanding the differences between general dentistry and cosmetic dentistry will help you choose your dentist according to your oral health needs. Let’s dive deep and learn more about the difference.

What is General Dentistry?

In a nutshell, general dentistry relates to being able to do certain things related to your teeth’ health. For instance, if you have a hole in your teeth, you need to get a filling done. If you have a cracked tooth, you might have to do a crown. Or, if you have some gum disease, you have to do some cleaning or hygiene. 

General dentistry is a field of dentistry that deals with dental problems linked with dental pain, discomfort, and oral hygiene. Some of the general dentistry in Katy procedures are-

  • Tooth extraction

  • Cavity filling

  • Root canal

General dentists can also perform specific cosmetic procedures such as bonding and teeth whitening. Your general dentist should be your go-to resource for your overall dental healthcare. 

According to British Columbia Dental Association studies, a general dentist usually diagnoses oral diseases, gives preventive treatments, such as cleanings, examines and interprets your oral X-rays, and provides treatment plans to help you maintain oral health. They can tell their patients when other issues are causing injuries to their teeth, such as dry mouth, poor diet, and bruxism. 

What is Cosmetic Dentistry?

Do you want to make the appearance of your teeth look better? This is where cosmetic dentists make the entry. Cosmetic dentists are primarily concerned with how your teeth look. Under cosmetic dentistry in Katy, dentists usually perform these procedures:

  • Teeth whitening

  • Inlays and Onlays

  • Porcelain veneers

  • Smile makeover

  • Tooth-colored fillings

  • Dentures

  • Fixed implant

Cosmetic dentistry is the field of dental healthcare that addresses dental aesthetics. It focuses on repairing worn, broken, discolored, chipped, misshapen, and stained teeth. It also concentrates on dental gaps. Cosmetic dentistry is all about giving you a bright and healthy smile, also known as a smile makeover. 

Can General and Cosmetic Dentistry Overlap?

While there is a contrast between general and cosmetic dentistry, sometimes they can overlap in certain situations. For instance, if a patient suffers from a decaying tooth, the tooth must be extracted to avoid further decay. This is a part of general dentistry. But after the extraction, the appearance of the smile changes. The patient may opt to get porcelain veneers, which come under cosmetic dentistry, to replace the missing tooth. In the end, we can say that there is no definite line between cosmetic and general dentistry. 

What Are the Significant Differences between General and Cosmetic Dentistry?


When it comes to basic training, both general and cosmetic dentists go through the same training. A cosmetic dentist can perform all the necessary procedures that a general dentist can do, such as teeth cleaning, X-rays, and other fundamental techniques. Both the dentists (general and cosmetic) can fill cavities and add crowns, veneers, and bridges. They can also apply braces and provide other restorative procedures.

So, what’s the main difference? The main point of difference lies where you are concerned with the appearance of your teeth. Visiting a cosmetic dentist will give you the best quality aesthetic results for your teeth. 

Under general dentistry, the dentist cares for all the basic oral needs of your whole family. The dentist can be your family doctor for oral healthcare needs. On the other hand, a cosmetic dentist focuses more on the aesthetics of their patient’s smile. 

For example, both general and cosmetic dentists can fill a cavity. But, a cosmetic dentist will pay attention to the appearance of your teeth post filling. They can use a composite filling to match the color of your teeth. 

While both dentistry fields overlap, you should consult a dentist based on your oral healthcare needs and not just a recommendation. Contact Rightway Dental for your general dentistry or cosmetic dentistry questions. Our friendly doctor and staff are ready to answer all your questions,