General dentists are responsible for the diagnosis, treatment, management and overall coordination of a patient’s oral health. General dentists are trained in all dental procedures but choose not to specialize in only one specific area of dentistry. Dental specialists are dentists who have received additional education and training after receiving licensure as a general dentist. A dental education also gives you access to other career paths, like working in a hospital emergency room, conducting advanced laboratory research, teaching future dentists or even traveling the world with international health and relief organizations.
Top 10 Reasons to Become a Dentist
- Serve Others: Help people maintain and improve their oral health, quality of life and appearance
- Balance Your Lifestyle: Dentistry offers flexibility to balance professional and personal life
- Empower Your Patients: Give patients smiles they are proud to wear
- Research: Be involved with the scientific advancement of dentistry
- Be a Leader: Earn respect from your family, friends and community
- Educate: Be an educator on the importance of oral health
- Detect Disease: Treat oral health and detect disease - including cancer and cardiovascular disease
- Be Creative: Merge your artistic and scientific talents
- Succeed: With the aging population and increase in access to care, the demand and need for dentistry is on the rise
- Be Your Own Boss: Own a dental practice and set your own schedule
Need for Minority Dentists
There is a critical need in many underserved communities. Only 12 percent of students entering dental school are minorities, while minorities make up 25 percent of the general population. Recent data
shows that minority dentists treat a very high number of minority patients. You can make a difference.
Other Dental Careers
Dental hygienists, assistants and lab technicians are in high demand. Search the ADA Commission on Dental Accreditation website
for the hundreds of programs across the country that will prepare you for these rewarding careers.