How to become a Dentist
Dentists are professionals who examine and look after people’s mouths and teeth, as well as provide education for oral self-care. Their duties range from check ups, to cosmetic procedures, to minor surgery such as tooth extraction.
Most people who become a dentist will work in general practice; they will usually be the first point of call for someone who has issues with their teeth. They have an arsenal of treatments that they can provide; although they also refer patients to other trained professionals.
Some of the services provided by general practice dentists are:
- Dental check-ups – checking registered patients every six months to a year to do basic cleaning and scan for any issues that require treatment.
- Dental treatments – these can range from fillings to tooth extraction under local anesthetic. Anything requiring general anesthetic will usually have to be undertaken by a specialist.
- Cosmetic treatments – this includes whitening and can be done by a dentist or a dental hygienist.
- Diagnosing complex or ongoing problems and referring them to orthodontists and other oral and general health specialists.
Dentists can also progress to work in hospital dentistry, industry dentistry, or university lecturing and research.
All dentists need to have a degree in dentistry; the training on this course is so specialist that this is the only way into the career. Places on dental courses are high in demand, so it is important for candidates to show a keen interest in the subject when applying. Candidates for a dentistry degree course must have studied science at a higher level in secondary school.
After a degree, dentists will typically need more education to register. Having a lot of work experience and extra education will help a great deal to find initial jobs.
Someone who is becoming a dentist must demonstrate critical thinking, communication and hand-eye coordination, amongst other skills. This is normally verified with an official aptitude test. Dentists are often managers of their particular surgery, looking after a small team of nurses, hygienists and receptionists. Therefore, they will typically need to have managerial skills as well.
Being a dentist is well-respected and well-paid, and for the right person it can be very satisfying and rewarding. However, due to the length of training and competitiveness of the job market, it is crucial that anyone starting this career knows for sure that they want to be doing it.
What degree is most commonly held by a Dentist?
- Bachelor of Dental Surgery
- Doctor of Dental Surgery
- Doctor of Dental Medicine
- Master of Dentistry
- Bachelor of Dental Science
- Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS)
- Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS)
Career Transportability across Countries
What is the Salary of a Dentist?
|Experience||Average salary | year|
|Dental Practitioner||4+ years||$200,000||£87,566||$200,000|
What skills are needed to become a Dentist?
- Restorative Dentistry
- Cosmetic Dentistry
- Oral Surgery
- Teeth Whitening
- Clinical Research
- Pediatric Dentistry
- Customer Service
- Dental Care
- Public Health
- Root Canal
- TMJ Dysfunction
- Microsoft Office
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