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Career and Education Opportunities for Dentists in Houston, Texas

There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for dentists in the Houston, Texas area. There are currently 6,860 jobs for dentists in Texas and this is projected to grow 16% to 7,970 jobs by 2016. This is better than the national trend for dentists, which sees this job pool growing by about 15.3% over the next eight years. Dentists generally diagnose and treat diseases, injuries, and malformations of teeth and gums and related oral structures.

Dentists earn about $70 per hour or $147,530 yearly on average in Texas and about $68 per hour or $142,870 annually on average nationally. Compared with people working in the overall category of Dental, people working as dentists in Texas earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Dental nationally. People working as dentists can fill a number of jobs, such as: dental officer, dental intern, and periodontist.

There are eighty-one schools of higher education in the Houston area, including one within twenty-five miles of Houston where you can get a degree to start your career as a dentist. Given that the most common education level for dentists is a Doctoral degree, you can expect to spend four or five years training to become 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 Houston include:

  • Chiropractor. Adjust spinal column and other articulations of the body to correct abnormalities of the human body believed to be caused by interference with the nervous system. Examine patient to determine nature and extent of disorder. Manipulate spine or other involved area. May utilize supplementary measures, such as exercise, rest, and nutritional therapy.
  • 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.
  • Optometrist. Diagnose, manage, and treat conditions and diseases of the human eye and visual system. Examine eyes and visual system, diagnose problems or impairments, prescribe corrective lenses, and provide treatment. May prescribe therapeutic drugs to treat specific eye conditions.
  • Orthodontist. Examine, diagnose, and treat dental malocclusions and oral cavity anomalies. Design and fabricate appliances to realign teeth and jaws to produce and maintain normal function and to improve appearance.
  • 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

The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston - Houston, TX

The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, 7000 Fannin, Suite 1200, Houston, TX 77030. The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston is a small university located in Houston, Texas. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 3,865 students. The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston has 6 areas of study related to Dentist. They are:

  • Dentistry, professional degree which graduated 59 students in 2008.
  • Dental Clinical Sciences, master's degree.
  • Advanced General Dentistry, professional certificate which graduated 9 students in 2008.
  • Dental Public Health & Education, professional certificate.
  • Dental Materials, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Pediatric Dentistry/Pedodontics, master's degree and professional certificate which graduated four and zero students respectively in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Houston, Texas

Houston, Texas
Houston, Texas photo by Hequals2henry

Houston is located in Harris County, Texas. It has a population of over 2,242,193, which has grown by 14.8% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Houston, 89, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Houston are valued at $173,500 on average, which is near the state average. In 2008, 3,684 new homes were constructed in Houston, down from 6,035 the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Houston are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and administrative and support and waste management services. The average commute to work is about 27 minutes. More than 27.0% of Houston residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 9.7%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Houston is 8.0%, which is less than Texas's average of 8.1%.

The percentage of Houston residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 50.4%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. El Buen Pastor United Methodist Church, 34th Temple Church of God in Christ and Pentecostal Church of God in Christ are some of the churches located in Houston. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention and the United Methodist Church.

Houston is home to the Champion Rod and Gun Club and the Independence Heights Residential Historic District as well as Hermann Park and Hennessey Park. Shopping centers in the area include Windsor Plaza Shopping Center, Meyerland Plaza Shopping Center and Meyerland Shopping Center. Visitors to Houston can choose from Capital Inn, Bradford Homesuites - Houston Galleria and Best Western Fountainview Inn and Suites for temporary stays in the area.