How to become a Dentist. Have you ever thought about becoming a Dentist in the UK? Read our free guide to learn more about Dentist careers.
To become a dentist you must attend a dental degree programme. For the standard 5 year degree you will usually need 5 GCSEs and 3 A Levels (Including 2 Science subjects preferably Chemistry and Biology) at grades AAA to ABB. If you don’t have science based A Levels then you will be required to complete a pre dental year on top.
Dentist Job Description
Dentists are persons who are responsible for the care and repair of teeth. They carry out check-ups, give advice on dental care, and provide solutions when there are oral issues. Dentists are generally expected to be confident, Level -headed and willing to work at short notice and long hours, and capable of remaining calm in stressful situations. The hours depend on the department you are employed within. Being a Dentist is a good job for many people, but the key traits to have are a sociable personality, strong teamwork skills, and ability to work under direction, a good sense of humour, calm under pressure and caring.
Responsibilities and Duties
Standard duties vary dependent on the environment in which you are employed. A dentist is responsible for the routine consultations with patients, examining them and making diagnosis and offering treatment. Community dentists may find themselves in charge of minor procedures such as fillings or extractions, to the fitting of braces and tooth whitening. A hospital Dentist may find themselves dealing with more severe dental issues such as facial injuries, reconstruction or fitment of prosthetic teeth, and giving advice and care to patients following surgery. Orthodontists deal with the fitment of braces and straightening of teeth only. Maxillofacial surgeons deal with the reconstruction of the mouth and teeth following accidents or disfigurement. You may also be responsible for making referrals to such senior dentists if you are a community dentist.
These may vary depending on the duties and job you are doing. Most Dentists work on an appointment basis usually between 9-5pm. Emergency Dentists and hospital Dentists are usually required around the clock and therefore you can expect to be called upon during any required time.
Skills and Training Development
Dentists can expect to progress through their careers with improving skills and knowledge as well as time served. You may find yourself qualified as a Dentist, and decide to progress your career into a specialist field such as orthodontics, paediatric dentistry, periodontics or prosthodontics. This will require a little extra education and experience. Promotion to higher ranks such as partner of a surgery or head of department is usually gained through time service. You could also consider becoming a technician, for example creating false dentures, palettes or implants, or you might wish to specialise in dental sales as many dentists can offer an insight into new products and treatments available.
Average Dentist Salary
The average salary for a Trainee Dentist is £26,000 PA.
The average salary for a Qualified Dentist is £30,000 PA.
The average salary for a Senior Dentist is £45,000 PA.
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