What Does a General Dentist Do?

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You never realize how important a general dentist is until you don’t have one. The general dentist needs to be able to handle a wide variety of problems, and they need to undergo years of training and some time in residency before they have the necessary qualifications. When investigating where to go for general dentistry in Houston, TX, this should give you some idea what will be required of your dentist.

Your First Home for Dental Care

You should see your general dentist at least twice a year. At these appointments, he or she will likely give you a check-up, look for any dental or gum problems you may have – or that seem to be on the horizon – and get your teeth cleaned, usually by an in-house dental hygienist. Perhaps the most important task of a general dentist is running a friendly, welcoming office. Dental appointments aren’t just scary for kids, they can be a major source of anxiety for patients of all ages. Dentists are aware of this, and know that it’s up to them and their staffs to run a friendly office so every visit is as pain-free as possible.


The checkups are where you report any problems you might be having, and your dentist can give your mouth a once-over for any cavities or gum issues. Also, every couple visits or so, your dentist will take x-rays of your teeth, and analyze the results for any trouble that may arise. This means their office will also be where your dental records and x-rays are stored to be shared with specialists when required.

Minor Procedures

If your general dentist detects a cavity, they can do the procedure right in their office – sometimes the same day. It’s also the place you’ll go should you require something more extensive like having a crown placed, a tooth pulled, or sometimes a root canal performed. Because they’ve been trained, and are regularly learning about new procedures and materials, they’re adept at handling emergencies as well. If you have a toothache that simply must be handled immediately, don’t go to the ER. Call your general dentist first.

Referrals to Specialists

There are several aspects of dental care the general dentist is not trained for. They are, however, knowledgeable about all types of care, and they’ll know when it’s the best time to refer their patient to a specialist such as a periodontist or an orthodontist. And since they know your history – and have the x-rays to prove it – they can provide any information the specialist might need to further provide you with the care you need.

As you look for a general dental office in Houston, TX, be aware of all that is required of your dentist. You’re going to be seeing your general dentist a lot, and it’s good to know you’ll be well taken care of.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.

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