A General Dentist is usually your primary dental care provider who diagnoses and treats your immediate and long-term oral health care needs.

After graduating from dental school, all dentists are considered General Dentists. They may then choose to specialize in a certain area of interest to them, such as Endodontics (the treatment of teeth with diseased tissue) or Pediatric Dentistry (treating children). But did you know that General Dentistry is also a specialization?

What do General Dentists do?

Because of their broad general knowledge and training in dentistry, a General Dentist is usually able to treat most, if not all dental issues. Rather than focusing on one particular area, they will have been trained to some extent in all areas of dentistry. This does not mean that a General Dentist will know absolutely everything there is to know in every area of dentistry, but rather they have the knowledge and experience to treat most dental issues.

Treatments usually performed by General Dentists usually include, but are not limited to:

  • Checkups & Cleaning
  • Diagnosing various conditions
  • Cosmetic procedures such as teeth whitening and veneers
  • Fillings
  • Crowns
  • Bridges
  • Dentures
  • Dental Implants
  • Gum Disease Treatments
  • Mouthguards
  • Bruxism/TMJ Therapy
  • Oral Surgery

General dentists can be identified by the following degrees:

 In the United States

  • D.S.
  • M.D.

Outside the United States

  • D.S.
  • D.
  • B.

If a General Dentist does not perform certain treatments, they will usually refer a patient to a specialist in that particular area. Dentists may not always remain in General Dentistry – they may develop an interest in, or naturally become more involved in a certain area. In this case, they would complete a two-year post-doctorate to become a specialist in that particular area of dentistry.