Cosmetic Dentistry

What Is the Difference Between a Dentist and a Cosmetic Dentist?

December 12, 2023
Cosmetic Dentist

o you understand "What Is the Difference Between a Dentist and a Cosmetic Dentist?" The dental field offers various specialties, focusing not only on oral health but also on enhancing smiles. While orthodontists concentrate on teeth straightening and restoration experts handle tooth replacements, the differences between dentists and cosmetic dentists can be unclear.

In terms of education, both cosmetic dentists and general dentists hold the same dentistry degree, enabling them to practice and offer services within their state. Does this mean cosmetic dentists are identical to general dentists, and can any dentist claim to be a cosmetic dentist? The answer is both yes and no.

The Training:

Cosmetic dentists receive extensive training in various procedures, focusing on enhancing the smile's aesthetics. While general dentists handle basic services like fillings and root canals, cosmetic dentists aim to make procedures visually appealing while ensuring oral health. They meticulously blend even unseen elements like posterior crowns with surrounding teeth.

General dentists often complete minimal post-school education, while cosmetic dentists pursue advanced certifications and attend specialized training programs. For example, becoming a preferred Invisalign provider requires additional certification. This commitment to ongoing education distinguishes cosmetic dentists, enabling them to offer comprehensive cosmetic dental services.


Both dentists perform various procedures, but a cosmetic dentist specializes in treatments like veneers, gaining extensive experience in the process. While a general dentist may offer some cosmetic services, consulting a cosmetic dentist ensures superior results. The distinction lies in the cosmetic dentist's frequent practice, deep experience, and ongoing education, setting them apart in their field.

Services Offered by General Dentists

Your regular bi-annual exams and cleanings are usually conducted by your general or family dentist. While cosmetic dentists may also perform these procedures, their focus is more on appearance and function rather than preventive care. General dentists commonly provide the following services:

Services Offered by a Cosmetic Dentist

The services provided by a cosmetic dentist vary depending on the practitioner's specialization. However, there are common procedures that most cosmetic dentists offer to enhance patient care. These may include:

Is There a Price Difference?

Cosmetic dentists often engage in more seminars and training post-dental school to stay updated with the latest advancements in the field. Their primary aim is to provide patients with beautiful, healthier smiles. However, this additional training comes at a cost to patients. Cosmetic dentistry services typically have a higher price tag compared to those offered by general dentists. This is mainly due to the increased time spent by the dentist with each patient and the complexity of the procedures involved.

Choosing Your Dentist

Deciding on a dentist depends on your needs. Do you need emergency care or want a brighter smile? While both cosmetic and general dentists can help, they specialize in different areas.

Considering cost and expertise, many prefer cosmetic dentists for smile enhancement and general dentists for routine care.

Choosing Your Dentist

What is a Prosthodontist?

A prosthodontist recognized by the ADA, like dentists and orthodontists, requires three additional years of university education. While any dentist can claim to be a cosmetic dentist with some extra training, this isn't the case for prosthodontists.

The American Dental Association defines prosthodontists as specialists in diagnosing, planning treatment, and maintaining oral function, appearance, and health, especially for patients with missing or deficient teeth and oral tissues. Prosthodontists focus mainly on restoring missing teeth and related issues.

They undergo extensive training in general dentistry and cosmetics, specializing in dental restorations like implants. While cosmetic and general dentists can also perform these procedures, prosthodontists have more education and training.

Prosthodontists also handle specialized services like dental bridges, dentures (full and partial), implants, and reconstructions.

To perfect your smile, schedule an appointment with Perfect White Smile in Beverly Hills, CA. New patients can call (424) 284-8215, and existing patients can reach us at (310) 276-4537. Let us help you understand "What is the difference between a dentist and a cosmetic dentist?" and discover the best options for your oral health and aesthetics. Take the first step towards a brighter, shinier, and healthier smile today!


General vs. Cosmetic Dentist: How to Choose?

Choosing between a general dentist and a cosmetic dentist depends on your needs. General dentists handle routine care, while cosmetic dentists specialize in smile-enhancing treatments like whitening and veneers.

What can you expect from prosthodontist benefits?

Prosthodontists focus on restoring teeth and oral tissues, offering expertise in implants, bridges, and dentures for comprehensive dental solutions.

What influences dental procedure cost?

Factors like treatment complexity and materials influence dental procedure costs. While cosmetic services may cost more, they offer unique smile-enhancing benefits.

How often should you go for Regular check-ups?

Try to go for a regular check-up every six months to maintain oral health. Your dentist may suggest more frequent visits based on your specific needs.

How Can We Help

The smile of your dreams starts with a consultation.

Located in Beverly Hills Perfect White Smile creates the world's most beautiful smiles and relieves patients of TMJ symptoms. Many times, both can be achieved at the same time in the same procedure!

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