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What Does Your Future as a Dentist Look Like?

So you’ve been accepted into dental school and are planning your future as a high flying and, hopefully highly paid, dentist.

While that plan sounds easy to execute while you’re still in school, your chances of success will be a lot higher if you start planning out your strategy for success as early as possible.

As you probably already know, dentists have a myriad of career options to choose from. You can work for a governmental agency; a large dental chain with hundreds of offices worldwide; or even strike it out on your own. And even those options have plenty of options in and of themselves.

Figuring out which of these choices you want to run with is an incredibly important decision that you definitely don’t want to take lightly. If you’re in the process of deciding what kind of dentist you want to be, here are some thoughts that might help you make the right decision.

Partner Up
One of the really great things about being a new dentist is that there are plenty older dentists out there who are more than happy to act as mentors to help your development.

Even better, some of these mature dentists will take on a younger dentist as a partner with the intention of eventually selling them the business before they retire.

Of course you’ll want to make this as formal a business arrangement as you can. We strongly suggest that call in a professional business appraiser who is experienced with dental practice valuation to help make certain you’re paying a fair price for your partnership.

Specialize
Another great way of finding success as a dentist is to find a high paying specialty such as orthodontics, cosmetic dentistry, or even pediatric dentistry. These specialties may involve a few extra years in dental school, but that additional schooling can really pay off over the course of your career.

Of course you don’t want to specialize in too narrow a niche. While narrow specialties can be very interesting, unless you’ve got enough patients to keep the revenue flowing, you won’t really make much in the way of cash.

Academics
One way around this conundrum is to add an academic element to your specialty. There are plenty of opportunities for academics to explore some incredibly interesting segments of the dental world without a lot of pressure to make money to keep the lights on in a private practice.

What you will find in academia is a lot of pressure to keep pushing the frontiers of your chosen field. That old saying, “Publish or perish,” that’s ruled the academic world since time eternal, is as true today as it was the first time it was uttered. Universities are notoriously competitive places and there’s no shortage of office politics to keep things interesting.

Finally
There’s practical no end to the opportunities for newly minted dentists as they get started out on their careers. A young dental student who really thinks ahead and maps out a long term strategy for success can enjoy a truly satisfying career.

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