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7 Ways to Advance Your Career in Dentistry

by Nina Smith

A career in dentistry can be extremely rewarding and fulfilling, providing you choose the right path. While all dentists have the opportunity to deliver high-quality care to patients, there are various ways to progress your career and achieve your professional goals. With this in mind, take a look at these seven ways to advance your career in dentistry:

1. Get a Job You Love

Source: telegraph.co.uk

Maybe you’re eager to work in a busy family practice or perhaps you prefer working in a smaller surgery? Alternatively, you might decide that working in a hospital setting and treating patients with more complex dental problems is the right option for you.

Once you’ve completed your postgraduate training, you’ll have the opportunity to work in different environments, so be sure to make the most of this. By researching the various roles available on sites like www.dentaljobsonline.ie, you can see exactly what’s on offer. As well as looking for roles that you’re currently equipped for, you can also use job adverts to help you plan for future career progression and advancement.

2. Work with a Recruiter

As well as applying for jobs directly, you can work with a recruiter to help you find a role that’s right for you. With up-to-date information about the job market and valuable contacts throughout the industry, building a long-term professional relationship with a recruiter can be a savvy way to reach the top of your profession.

In addition to letting them know when you’re actively looking for a new job, you might find that recruiters reach out to you when they become aware of a role that might suit you. Being headhunted can be a great way to secure a promotion or take the next step in your career, which is why working with a recruiter can be so advantageous.

3. Specialise in a Particular Area

Source: parodontaxarabia.com

If you choose to become a hospital dentist, you’ll also need to select an area to specialise in. Some hospital dentists specialise in children’s dentistry, restorative dentistry, orthodontics, or oral surgery, for example.

However, if you decide to work in a general practice, you may also decide to specialise. If you want to offer additional services via your surgery, for example, you may decide to incorporate cosmetic dentistry into your practice. Alternatively, some dentists may specialise in treating nervous or young patients.

4. Become a Thought Leader

A thought leader is essentially someone who is recognised as an industry pioneer. You might put forward new theories, share interesting opinions, or even propose new types of research to enhance dentistry as a whole.

To become well-known as a thought leader, you’ll need to seek out opportunities to share your experiences and ideas. This might be via industry events, such as national conferences or global symposiums or via peer-reviewed publications.

Additionally, many professionals establish themselves as thought leaders by self-publishing materials, such as blogs and online articles, or by taking part in interviews and podcasts. By doing so, you can promote your personal brand and advance your career, as well as making a positive contribution to the dental profession.

5. Open Your Own Practice

Source: jamaicahospital.org

If you choose to work in general dentistry, rather than in a hospital environment, you may begin your career by taking on a salaried role. Over time, however, you may be given the option to become a partner and have an ownership stake in the practice. Alternatively, you could decide to open your own practice.

When you open your own dental practice, you have the opportunity to build your business in any way you choose. You might decide to invite other partners to join you, or you may enjoy the chance to take sole control of your dental surgery. When you open a practice, you can combine your role as a medical professional with that of a business owner.

For dentists with an entrepreneurial spirit, opening a practice can be a great way to achieve your career goals. Whether you dream of opening a chain of dental clinics or you simply want to serve your local community, running your own business and being a partner in your own practice can be a fantastic way to reach the top of the profession.

6. Offer Private Treatments

In the UK, many dentists offer NHS dental services and receive income via the government for the treatments they perform. For patients, this ensures access to affordable, high-quality dental care. However, only specific treatments are available via the National Health Service, which can limit the scope of your practice.

If you want to offer cosmetic dentistry services, for example, these are only available on the NHS in limited circumstances.
By widening the scope of your practice to incorporate private dental services, you can broaden the treatment options that are available to your patients. Furthermore, you can set your own pricing structure when offering private treatments, rather than adhering to NHS regulations. As a result, incorporating private dental services can be a highly effective way of progressing your career and increasing the profitability of your surgery.

7. Become a Dental Researcher

Source: dental-tribune.com

If you want to have an impact on the future of dentistry and develop new and exciting treatments, a career as a dental researcher could be the right option for you. After gaining experience as a practising dentist, for example, you may decide to undertake a research-based role at a university or dental school.

In fact, some dental researchers combine this with regular practice, so it can be a viable way to vary your career and enjoy the best of both worlds.

Being a Successful Dentist

There’s no doubt that dentistry is a great career choice. People will always require dental treatment, which ensures there will be a consistent demand for your services but, more importantly, you can provide important medical care to your patients. As a result, you’ll find that your career offers an immense amount of job satisfaction, no matter what path you decide to follow.