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Becoming A Dentist: Know What To Expect

A career in dentistry can be an exciting and often rewarding experience. If you believe you may like to become a dentist, the following article will help to provide the necessary information toward preparing for your upcoming education.

Dentists examine patients' teeth and mouth tissue in order to treat and diagnose other issues. While many pursue general practice, some specialize by becoming:

1. Orthodontists
2. Prosthodontists
3. Periodontists
4. Pediatric Dentists
5. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
6. Oral and Maxillofacial Radiologists
7. Oral Pathologists
8. Public Health Dentists
9. Endodontist

Employment Facts:
In 2008, dentists held over 140,000 jobs. The majority of this statistic was made up of general practitioners, followed by orthodontists, surgeons, and Prosthodontists. Over 6,900 were found to work in various other specialty areas.

Students must attend a dental school which is accredited by the ADA (American Dental Association). Acceptance into one of the 56 schools depends upon the completion of at least two years of predental education, with most applicants having already obtained a bachelor's degree. Competition for admittance is quite high, and each school requires the passing of the Dental Admissions Test.

Once the student has graduated from a certified school; he or she must be licensed by the state in which they wish to station their practice. Practical and written exams are administered by licensing agencies, which must be passed in order to become licensed.

Projection of employment growth in the field is above average for all occupations through 2010, though outlook varies according to specialty. For example, growth for a specialty such as Prosthodontists is projected to be much faster than that of occupations requiring a master's degree. In 2008, salaried dentists earned an average income of roughly 142,000. Though many physicians, being self employed tend to earn considerably higher wages.

General professionals involve themselves with many basic preventative tasks. These include, but are not limited to:
1. Tooth impressions
2. Straightening of teeth
3. The treatment of gum disease
4. Prescription of medication
5. Cavity filling
6. Decay removal
7. X-rays
8. Sealant application
9. Tooth extraction
10. Administering of anesthetic

Specialties typically focus on specific tasks and treatments:
1. Orthodontists: Straighten teeth through the use of braces and retainers
2. Public Health: Promote good oral hygiene methods within the community
3. Oral Pathologists: the study of diseases related to the same.
4. Pediatrics: treatment of children
5. Periodontists: treatment of hone and gums
6. Prosthodontists: Replacement of missing or damaged teeth through the use of dentures, crowns, bridgesFind Article, and implants
7. Endodontist: Treatment of root canals
8. Maxillofacial and Radiologists Use of imaging technologies in order to diagnose neck and head diseases.

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