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Seven Careers You Can Pursue In The Dental Industry

Seven Careers You Can Pursue In The Dental Industry

Dental Industry

Choosing a profession is a crucial decision you will make in your life.

While there are many opportunities out there, pursuing a career in the dental industry is one of the most rewarding.

Professionals in this industry work in varied scenarios inside and outside a standard work environment.

Is Dentistry a Good Career for the Future?

Dentistry is a great career choice for the future. There will always be a need for dentists and their services, so you can rest assured that your job will be secure.

Dental hygiene is an excellent career path for those who love helping others, but it can also be rewarding on its own merits. There are many career options in the dental field. If you’re interested in pursuing a career as a dentist, there are many things you will need to learn and study during your education.

You may also want to consider how much money you can make from this profession and how long it will take to become fully licensed and certified. If you are interested in working with people and serving their dental needs, this may be your right career choice.

Here are a few careers that dentistry students might consider pursuing:

Dentist making professional teeth cleaning withb the cotton, female young patient at the dental office.

1. Dental Assistant

As a dental assistant, you’ll work closely with dentists and hygienists to provide patient care. Your job will focus on assisting the dentist in various procedures, such as taking x-rays or preparing patient treatment rooms. You may also help patients by answering questions about their treatment plan and giving them instructions on maintaining good oral health between visits.

Dental assistants must be able to communicate effectively with patients, colleagues, and other members of the dental team. Since they’re often tasked with explaining procedures before they happen, it’s important that they’re able to demonstrate empathy when talking about sensitive topics such as tooth decay or gum disease. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for a dental assistant is around $42,500.

2. Dental Hygienist

Dental hygienists are professionals who clean teeth and examine patients to detect problems with their teeth, gums, or bites. They also educate patients on good oral hygiene practices and help them manage their dental care.

Many jobs in this field require certification from the National Board for Certification in Dental Hygiene (NBCHDH), which involves passing an exam after completing college coursework and clinical training requirements. Dental hygiene career paths include working in a dentist’s office, at a dentist’s practice, or as an independent contractor. A license is necessary for a dental hygienist to practice in any state.

Dentist examining a patient's teeth

3. Dental Lab Technician

Dental laboratory technicians are responsible for creating the crowns, bridges, and other restorative dental appliances used in patients’ mouths. These professionals work closely with dentists to ensure each patient receives an appliance explicitly crafted for their mouth and use.

Lab technicians may be employed by a private practice or a dental lab. To become a lab technician, you must take biology, chemistry, and science courses. You will also need to spend time working in a dental office or dental lab to gain some practical experience before entering this career field on your own.

The average salary of a dental laboratory technician is about $47,000 annually. However, it depends on which state you live in.

4. Dentist

A dentist is a medical professional who diagnoses and treats conditions that affect the mouth, teeth, and gums. Dentists must complete a 4-year undergraduate degree followed by 4 years of dental school. After graduation and licensure, dentists can work in private practice, group practice, or hospital settings.

The average salary of a dentist is about $167,000 annually. However, it depends on which state you live in. Dentists in Delaware are the highest paid, earning a mean salary of about $233,000.

Woman patient at dentist

5. Orthodontist

Being an orthodontist is a great way to help people achieve their best smiles. An orthodontist specializes in correcting the alignment of teeth and jaws and treating facial injuries, TMJ disorders, and craniofacial anomalies.

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Orthodontists typically graduate from dental school with a degree in dentistry and then complete an additional two to three years of specialty training. As an orthodontist in the United States, you can earn around $ 267,000 annually.

6. Periodontist

A periodontist is a dentist who specializes in preventing, diagnosing, and treating periodontal diseases. They may be general dentists or specialists and have completed a two-year residency program following graduation from dental school.

In addition to earning their DDS (Doctor of Dental Surgery) degree, they must also earn an additional three years of postgraduate training in periodontics to become certified as a specialist in this area. Periodontists can expect to earn between $217,000 to $285,000 annually.

7. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon

Oral and maxillofacial surgeons treat diseases, deformities, and defects involving the oral and maxillofacial region. They also treat injuries to the face, jaws, mouth, and teeth. Oral surgeons perform surgery on swallowing passages to prevent further damage or injury for people who have had strokes or other brain injuries that affect these areas.

Maxillofacial surgeons are trained in dentistry and plastic surgery techniques, such as reconstructive surgery, to correct birth defects such as cleft palates or facial deformities caused by tumors or accidents.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, oral and maxillofacial surgery is the highest-paid dental specialty, with a mean annual wage of $311,460.

Dentist with dentistry tools isolated


There are a lot of different well-paying careers you can pursue in the dental industry. As you can see, there are options to suit various needs. Most importantly, you are passionate about doing what you love and being happy with it. If you are interested in becoming a dentist, the best way to get started is by talking with your high school guidance counselor or visiting your local community college. You can also visit the American Dental Association website for more information about dental careers.


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