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According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean hourly wage of a dentist is $73.83. The mean annual wage is $153,470. However, earnings vary according to number of years in practice, location, hours worked, and specialty.

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition, Dentists, on the Internet at (visited November 20, 2013).Salzmann, J. A. "Dentistry." Encyclopedia Americana. Grolier Online, 2013. Web. 20 Nov. 2013.Kalkwarf, Kenneth L. "Dentistry." Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia. Grolier Online, 2013. Web. 24 Nov. 2013.Pictures:

Average Salary




Dentists are responsible for treating problems correlated with the teeth and surrounding tissue in the mouth while also advising and providing care to prevent any future dental problems. Some specific duties include filing cavities, removing tooth decay, examining x-rays, placing protective sealants on teeth, and repairing fractured teeth. Dentists who choose to practice privately not only have to fulfill their duties, but are also responsible for purchasing equipment, bookkeeping, employ dental assistants, hygienists, receptionists, and lab technicians.

Duties and Responsibilities

Education Requirements


Expected Job Growth

Dentists are required by all 50 states to be licensed. Dental aspirants must graduate from an accredited dental school accompanying a written and practical exam. In order to get into dental school, students must have at least two years of college level pre-dental education. Dental students commonly have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree prior to entering dental school. Generally, dental school lasts four years in which students must take biochemistry, physiology, microbiology, anatomy, clinical sciences, and lab techniques. During the last two years, students may treat patients in health centers under the supervision of licensed students. Dental school graduates are presented with the degree of Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) which permit them to practice as a profession dentist.

Employment of dentists is expected to grow faster than the average of all occupations, by 21 percent from 2010 to 2020. It is predicted that people of the baby-boom generation will need complex dental work. Furthermore, public demand will increase since studies continue to connect oral health and overall health. Patients with new or expanded dental insurance coverage will be more likely to visit a dentist more in the future. Due to its current popularity, cosmetic dental services, for example teeth-whitening treatments, will become gradually trendy resulting in an increase of patients.

By: Jeannie Lai


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