There are several career areas for dental professionals, each with its own educational requirements; some require certification and licensure. Dentistry is a unique profession in which there are so many avenues of oral health to explore - and with the opportunity to work in diverse settings.
The dental professions offer a range of career opportunities and experiences. For example: dentist, dental hygienist, dental lab technician and dental assistant.
Expanded Function Dental Auxiliary (EFDA)
Benefits of a career in dentistry include gratification and prestige of working in the health care field, job security, flexibility, and a sense of personal satisfaction from helping others. Dentists enjoy a unique, diverse, technology-driven profession with numerous areas of service and expertise. For example: disease detection, diagnosis & treatment,
aesthetic improvement, surgical restoration, public education and prevention.
Dental hygienists are an important part of the dental care team. There are some educational requirements for dentist career. Duties can include taking the patient's history, cleaning teeth, taking and developing dental x-rays, placing sealants and fluorides, teaching patients how to brush and floss properly, educating the patient on how nutrition is important to good dental health, and more. There are good job opportunities on a full or part-time basis in dental hygiene.
Dental lab technicians are the behind-the-scenes members of a dental team - working from the dental laboratory making full and partial dentures, working from the impression taken at the dentist's office. They also create crowns and veneers, orthodontic appliances and splints. The lab technician works with a wide range of materials and high-tech equipment and instruments.
Dental assistant tasks can include taking and developing of dental x-rays, taking patient blood pressure and pulse, patient comfort, demonstrating good oral hygiene techniques, taking impressions, providing the patient with follow-up instructions after surgery or other oral procedure, and infection control. The dental assistant may also help the dentist with examinations and fillings. There are excellent employment possibilities in this field.
Expanded function dental auxiliary is a person that can perform the same tasks as the dental assistant, plus place restorations and sealants, working under supervision and full responsibility of a licensed dentist.
The educational requirements are necessary in career of dentistry. Bachelor degree in biology, doctorate at school of dentistry is the most important ones. Here are other educational requirements.
Dentist: Undergraduate education and four years of dental school; additional education for dental specialties.
Dental Hygienist: Completion of a dental hygiene curriculum, generally offered as part of a two or four-year full-time curriculum at community colleges or technical schools, or universities and/or dental schools. Additional studies are available for higher-level careers in dental hygiene, such as teaching, clinical practice or public health.
Dental Lab Technology: A one-year degree of certification for studies at a college is available, and continuing education in the field is desirable.
Dental Assistant: Dental assistants can receive on-the-job training, and a minimum of a high school diploma is required. However, better opportunities may exist with a college certificate or two-year degree.