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Dentist Job Description: Top Duties and Requirements

A Dentist, or a Doctor of Dentistry, helps people keep their teeth and gums healthy. Their duties include telling people how they can take care of their mouths, diagnosing cavities and other oral issues, and performing a variety of treatments.

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Dentist duties and responsibilities

Dentists perform a wide range of tasks, including completing insurance paperwork, training Dental Assistants and Administrative Staff, and resolving both customer complaints and disputes between employees. They also keep the office organized and delegate or order new supplies and equipment when needed. Most Dentists work during business hours, but some take emergency patients on nights and weekends, or work shifts on-call in hospitals. Some duties and responsibilities for a Dentist may include:

  • Listening to patients’ medical histories and updating their records
  • Doing routine exams and handling emergency procedures
  • Giving local or general anesthesia when needed
  • Determining prices for different procedures and providing estimates to patients
  • Helping correct speech and sleep-related difficulties, headache, and other issues caused by dental problems
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Dentist Job Description Examples:

What does a Dentist do?

Dentists usually work in dental offices or clinics. They explain procedures step-by-step to patients, complete dental procedures, and prescribe medication when needed. Dentists also create oral devices such as dentures, veneers, bridges, and dental implants, among others. They help people look their best, eat their favourite foods without experiencing pain, and prevent issues such as bad breath and periodontal diseases. Most Dentists can remove decayed teeth and fill cavities, and some can perform more complex procedures.

Dentist skills and qualifications

Successful Dentists usually have a combination of social and technical skills. They can aid in calming people who get nervous during dental procedures by explaining their methods, and they reassure patients with their polite and professional attitude. Along with specific dentistry skills, other top skills and qualifications for Dentists include:

  • Good vision and the ability to notice and keep track of a variety of details
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Ability to stay calm in stressful situations

Dentist experience requirements

Many Dentist positions do not require any experience beyond the training these professionals must receive to get a dental licence, though it’s not uncommon to seek a specific type or length of experience.

Dentist education and training requirements

Most Dentist positions require a bachelor’s degree in any subject and a postgraduate degree in dentistry or dental surgery. Dentists must also complete a two- to four-year residency after obtaining both degrees. In some dental specialties, a six-year residency is required. During this time, residents perform dental procedures with the help and supervision of a more experienced Dentist.

Their educational training will provide them with an extensive understanding of biology and human anatomy, especially concerning the mouth and teeth, as well as the benefits and risks of dental procedures that healthcare providers perform. To get a licence, Dentists must successfully complete the National Dental Examining Board of Canada’s Certification Process and a provincial or territorial clinical exam. Additional licensing for specializations is usually required.

Dentist salary expectations

According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for a Dentist in Canada is $136,399 per year. This can vary and is dependent on many factors including location, experience, and the organization or clinic that is hiring.

Job description samples for similar positions

If a Dentist isn’t exactly what your business is looking for, some related job description samples include:

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Dentist job description FAQs

What are the day-to-day duties of a Dentist?

Dentists pull teeth, fill cavities, perform root canals, add caps or veneers, design and construct bridges for teeth, and more. They administer oxygen and anesthesia, and prescribe antibiotics to patients recovering from procedures when needed. Dentists can refer patients to Oncologists, Cardiologists, and other specialists, as needed. For equipment, they often use drills and other specialized instruments. Dentists also help people sleep better by helping them avoid grinding their teeth.

What are the different types of Dentists?

Pediatric Dentists specialize in children, and Orthodontists correct tooth and jaw alignment with braces, retainers, and other devices. Periodontists treat tissue damaged by gum disease, and Endodontists perform root canals. An Oral Surgeon can remove cancerous tissue, take out wisdom teeth, help repair trauma after an accident, add dental implants, and perform similar procedures. Many Dentists are licensed to work in several specialties so they can take care of a wide range of patients.

What makes a good Dentist job description?

An appealing Dentist job description includes an overview of the company and its history, culture, and values. It also needs to mention education, experience, and skill requirements. Talk about the dental office where the new Dentist will work, the medical equipment available, the procedures that the company offers, and what a typical day will be like, and the customers that the company serves most often. Mention any benefits that come with the position, such as relocation payments, and the hours that the new Dentist will work.  

Job Description Examples

Need help writing a job description for a specific role? Use these job description examples to create your next great job posting. Or if you’re ready to hire, post your job on Indeed.

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