Dental care is a fast growing industry and so it is not surprising that it has become one of the most desirable professions in India. The main responsibilities of a dentist would include examining teeth and diagnosing patients’ dental conditions, discussing treatment options with patients, carrying out clinical treatments and educating patients on oral healthcare. Off late, new fields such as oral pathology, periodontics and orthodontics have been added to the field of dentistry which means more job opportunities for young and skilled dentists. Careers in dentistry offer great pay packages along with flexible work hours. However, that is not the best part, completing a course in dentistry also opens up the opportunity to start your very own practice.
Fees for BDS can be around R 1 to R 2 lakhs per annum while MDS degree can cost around R 1 to R 3 lakhs per annum. In private institutions under management quota, MDS can cost between R 5 lakhs to R 10 lakhs.
Some of the job opportunities that are open to you after completing a dentistry course are –
- General Dentist
- Cosmetic Dentist
- Oral Surgeon
- Dental Assistant
- Dental Hygienist
- Dental Lab Technician
After completing BDS, you have the choice to pick any specialisation in MDS. Choosing a specialisation helps as it generally means getting better pay packages, you can choose from – Endodontics, Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology, Oral Surgery, Orthodontics, Pedodontics, Periodontics and Prosthodontics. Starting salary of a dentist can be around R 6000 a month if you get hired at a government hospital. However, it may be lesser in private hospitals. Students with Master’s Degree can expect a starting salary of R 7000 or more. Dentists can also earn well if they choose to open their own practice. It is not surprising to see well-established dentists earning between R 30,000 to R 1,00,000 in a month. To become a successful dentist, you need to be fit, patient, and practice a methodical and scientific approach. Also, since you will be consulting patients every day, it is important for you to be compassionate towards your fellowmen because only then you will be able to do your job well. You should also have great communication skills to converse and understand your patient better. A career in dentistry is fulfilling and meaningful because you are giving back to the community.
- Bachelor’s Degree – 50% in 10+2 (science stream with biology, physics and chemistry)
- Master’s Degree – Bachelor’s degree
- Bachelor of Dental Science – 4 years
- Masters in Dental Science – 2 years
- Maulana Azad Institute for Dental Sciences, Delhi
- Manipal College of Dental Science, Manipal, Karnataka
- Dental College and Hospital, Mumbai, Maharastra
The first year of dental studies is difficult as it is different from what you have studied before and is a major deviation from your regular science subjects. The amount of hard work needed may take a toll on students initially but with time one will grow to love the profession. In my opinion, dentistry is one of the best professions for a girl. Unlike any other job in the medical field, you are free from emergency and night duty. But to excel in this field, you must keep yourself updated with new methods and materials.
Phurpa Lhamu, Practising Dentist, Sikkim