What is Dentistry?

Dentists are healthcare professionals whose primary responsibility is maintaining the health of patients’ oral cavities and adjacent structures. Dentists provide preventive care and diagnose and treat problems affecting both hard and soft tissues, including teeth, jaw, lips, gingival tissue, and tongue. They also perform medical procedures such as surgery, laser surgery, and tissue grafts. Dentists improve their patients’ appearances through cosmetic dental procedures, which require finely attuned aesthetic sensibilities. Dentists provide a wide variety of services in many community arenas and must be comfortable interacting with people of all ages, cultures, and personalities.

Those who choose to continue their dental education after being awarded either the Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) or Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD) can pursue postdoctoral training or postgraduate work designed to enhance the general practitioner’s skill set.

Field Description

Work Setting

Most dentists become general practitioners and work in private practice, renting or owning an office and employing an average of four employees. Some, however, work in group practices or hospitals. Some dentists also teach, conduct research, or work in public health.

Related Careers

Dental assistant, dental hygienist, and dental laboratory technician.

Dentistry Programs
Dental School and Licensure
Early Acceptance Programs