Preparing Yourself for a Dentist Job
For many, dentistry seems like a natural calling. The skills involved as well as the drive to succeed as a medical professional seem to come naturally. For others, the desire is there, but it takes a bit more work. Either way, there are certain things that all dentists need to develop in order to pursue their dream. We will first take a look at some of the benefits of being a dentist, then we will talk about some of the basic skills a dentist needs to have.
Is it Worth All of the Work?
Being a dentist is rewarding in more ways than one, and landing one will be well worth it. First, let’s talk about the money. Fiscal responsibility is a necessity, so the amount you bring in is certainly a factor. The mean salary for a dentist, per hour, is $83.71. That’s a respectable amount of money. If you are able to keep your debt from being too high, as well as your monthly expenses from creeping up and up, you can both live off this amount and save up for a very comfortable future after retiring. This will afford you a comfortable lifestyle without many of the worries the average American has to push through day by day. Money isn’t everything, but it’s a necessity, and as a dentist, you will be in a good position to make what you need—and then some.
You also get the privilege of being able to help people out on a regular basis. There are many jobs that involve helping a small portion of the population, particularly those who have a need to purchase or consume a particular good or service. However, as a dentist, you get to help people attain better health. This directly impacts their standard of living and overall contentment. You also get to teach people better ways of taking care of their bodies. In this way, you get to “pay forward” some of the knowledge you get, giving it to others to help boost their lives as well. Hence, dentistry comes with payment in the form of both monetary and social benefits.
The Physical Skills a Dentist Needs
A dentist needs to have dexterity, particularly in their hands. Without this, the daily tasks would be difficult, at best. A dentist needs to be comfortable working with tools in a very small area, the mouth. This means controlling motions that sometimes require mild amounts of force in a way that doesn’t hurt the patient. If you do not yet have physical dexterity, there are exercises you can perform to help you develop it. If you are interested in dentistry, it would be a good idea to make sure you have the dexterity necessary before even checking out dentist openings.
Before looking into and dental associate jobs or dental associate positions, an aspiring dentist also needs to have physical stamina. This is particularly true if you want to be among the top professionals seeking dentist jobs. Even private dentist jobs require you to be on your feet for long periods of time, and if you’re not standing up, you will still have to maintain a less-than-natural posture for extended periods. This can take a toll on you if you don’t have the stamina necessary to handle the challenge. To get in shape for dental positions, you will need to exercise, strengthening your core in particular. This is because the core stabilizes the body during any prolonged position.
“Soft” Skills a Dentist Needs
A good dentist is going to have to have excellent communication skills. Not only do you have to be a good listener, but you have to be able to communicate clearly—even when what you have to say is technical or difficult to express. If you communicate clearly, your patients will have a better experience because they will understand how to make adjustments to their lifestyle.
Dentistry also requires a level of patience. Many people, young and old, have issues with going to the dentist. They have a tendency to be reticent, at best, and adversarial, at worst. It takes a lot of patience to handle folks like this. In the end, however, you will find it a rewarding, earnestly fulfilling profession.