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Career and Education Opportunities for Dentists in Columbia, Maryland

If you want to be a dentist, the Columbia, Maryland area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. There are currently 2,950 working dentists in Maryland; this should grow by 7% to about 3,160 working dentists in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for dentists are expected to grow by about 15.3%. In general, dentists diagnose and treat diseases, injuries, and malformations of teeth and gums and related oral structures.

Income for dentists is about $64 hourly or $133,550 annually on average in Maryland. Nationally, their income is about $68 hourly or $142,870 per year. Earnings for dentists are better than earnings in the general category of Dental in Maryland and better than general Dental category earnings nationally. People working as dentists can fill a number of jobs, such as: dental medicine doctor , endodontist, and pediatric dentist.

There are 109 schools of higher education in the Columbia area, including three within twenty-five miles of Columbia where you can get a degree to start your career as a dentist. The most common level of education for dentists is a Doctoral degree. You can expect to spend four or five years studying to be a dentist if you already have a Bachelor's degree, or eight to ten years if you have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Dentist

Dentist video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, dentists diagnose and treat diseases, injuries, and malformations of teeth and gums and related oral structures. They also may treat diseases of nerve, pulp, and other dental tissues affecting vitality of teeth.

Dentists diagnose and treat diseases, injuries, and malformations of teeth, gums and related oral structures, and furnish preventive and corrective services. They also use masks, gloves and safety glasses to safeguard themselves and their patients from infectious diseases. Equally important, dentists have to examine teeth and related tissues, using dental instruments, x-rays, and other diagnostic apparatus, to review dental health, diagnose diseases or abnormalities, and plan appropriate treatments. They are often called upon to formulate plan of treatment for patient's teeth and mouth tissue. They are expected to use air turbine and hand instruments, dental appliances and surgical implements. Finally, dentists oversee business, employing and supervising staff and handling paperwork and insurance claims.

Every day, dentists are expected to be able to maintain precise control of objects and devices through a range of movements. They need to piece together evidence to, in some sense, diagnose what is going on in a situation. It is also important that they evaluate problems as they arise.

It is important for dentists to fill pulp chamber and canal with endodontic materials. They are often called upon to perform oral and periodontal surgery on the jaw or mouth. They also produce and evaluate dental health educational materials. They are sometimes expected to administer anesthetics to limit the amount of pain experienced by patients during procedures. Somewhat less frequently, dentists are also expected to advise and instruct patients regarding preventive dental care, the causes and treatment of dental problems, and oral health care services.

Dentists sometimes are asked to advise and instruct patients regarding preventive dental care, the causes and treatment of dental problems, and oral health care services. They also have to be able to oversee business, employing and supervising staff and handling paperwork and insurance claims and treat exposure of pulp by pulp capping, removal of pulp from pulp chamber, or root canal, using dental instruments. And finally, they sometimes have to analyze and evaluate dental needs to establish changes and trends in patterns of dental disease.

Like many other jobs, dentists must have exceptional integrity and be thorough and dependable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Columbia include:

  • Dental Hygienist. Clean teeth and examine oral areas, head, and neck for signs of oral disease. May educate patients on oral hygiene, take and develop X-rays, or apply fluoride or sealants.
  • Emergency Medical Technician. Assess injuries, administer emergency medical care, and extricate trapped individuals. Transport injured or sick persons to medical facilities.
  • Medical Laboratory Technician. Perform routine medical laboratory tests for the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May work under the supervision of a medical technologist.
  • Physician Assistant. Provide healthcare services typically performed by a physician, under the supervision of a physician. Conduct complete physicals, provide treatment, and counsel patients. May, in some cases, prescribe medication. Must graduate from an accredited educational program for physician assistants.
  • Respiratory Therapist. Assess, treat, and care for patients with breathing disorders. Assume primary responsibility for all respiratory care modalities, including the supervision of respiratory therapy technicians. Initiate and conduct therapeutic procedures; maintain patient records; and select, assemble, and operate equipment.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Dentist Training

Howard University - Washington, DC

Howard University, 2400 Sixth St NW, Washington, DC 20059-0001. Howard University is a large university located in Washington, District of Columbia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 10,696 students and an admission rate of 49%. Howard University has a professional degree and a professional certificate program in Dentistry which graduated seventy and nineteen students respectively in 2008.

University of Maryland-Baltimore - Baltimore, MD

University of Maryland-Baltimore, 520 West Lombard Street, Baltimore, MD 21201-1627. University of Maryland-Baltimore is a medium sized university located in Baltimore, Maryland. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 6,156 students. University of Maryland-Baltimore has 4 areas of study related to Dentist. They are:

  • Dentistry, professional degree which graduated 100 students in 2008.
  • Dental Clinical Sciences, master's degree which graduated 10 students in 2008.
  • Advanced General Dentistry, professional certificate which graduated 28 students in 2008.
  • Oral Biology and Oral Pathology, doctor's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.

George Washington University - Washington, DC

George Washington University, 2121 I Street, NW, Washington, DC 20052. George Washington University is a large university located in Washington, District of Columbia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 25,027 students and an admission rate of 37%. George Washington University has a master's degree program in Dental Clinical Sciences which graduated nineteen students in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Columbia, Maryland

Columbia, Maryland
Columbia, Maryland photo by Jeff Kubina

Columbia is located in Howard County, Maryland. It has a population of over 96,421. The cost of living index in Columbia, 100, is near the national average.

The three most popular industries for women in Columbia are educational services, health care, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, public administration, and educational services. The average travel time to work is about 30 minutes. More than 59.0% of Columbia residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 28.7%, is higher than the state average.

The percentage of Columbia residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 49.3%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. Abiding Savior Lutheran Church, Atholton Seventh Day Adventist Church and Long Reach Interfaith Center are all churches located in Columbia. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the United Methodist Church and the Southern Baptist Convention.

Columbia is home to the Symphony Woods Office Center and the Rivers Corporate Park as well as Middle Patuxent Environmental Area and Clarksville Environmental Area. Shopping centers in the area include Governor Century Plaza Shopping Center, Atholton Shopping Center and Owen Brown Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Columbia can choose from PFMG, Courtyard by Marriott and Hilton Inn Columbia for temporary stays in the area.