A general dentist has completed a 5 year undergraduate Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) degree. A general dentist is involved in all aspects of dental care and will refer patients to a dental specialist (orthodontist, periodontist, endodontist, prosthodontist, oral and maxillofacial surgeon, paediatric dentist), dental hygienist, clinical dental technician for treatments that are outside of their scope. A general dentist performs the majority of dental procedures such as composite tooth coloured fillings, amalgam fillings, veneers, crowns, bridges, tooth removal, root canals, tooth whitening, dental hygiene cleans, dentures, etc. Some dentists have gained extra qualifications (diplomas or certificates) and expertise in certain areas of dentistry and can provide advanced treatment in those areas.
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