Hello all pre-dentals. We are bringing in a new segment here on the blog, called Career Spotlight, where we showcase and explore the nine dental specializations, different career settings, positions, and more in the wide world of dentistry.
After your four years of dental school and you are crowned the title of a DDS (doctor of dental surgery) or a DMD (doctor of dental medicine) you can choose to go above and beyond with additional post-graduate training to specialize!
With this specialized training you can hone your skills and knowledge specifically in the area of dentistry you desire.
For our first trick: Pediatric Dentistry!
I thought this would be a good place to start with specializations since it’s still a broad population of patients you will see: children. Even though pediatric dentistry refers to the treatment of the “pediatric population”, this actually covers a wide age range with widely varying needs, including all those between birth through the adolescent years. Check out the intro video from the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry below.
- After dental school graduation, a two-year pediatric dentistry residency program immerses dentists in the world often referred to as the pediatricians of dentistry. These programs feature a wide array of both clinical (i.e. in hospitals) and didactic (i.e. in classrooms) experiences working solely with children. A breakdown of the pediatric dentistry residency programs across the U.S. from the AAPD can be found here.
- The early years of a child’s life is a critical time for dental development and monitoring. The American Dental Association recommends visiting a pediatric dentist after the first tooth emerges and strongly suggests that an infant’s 1st dental visit should really be no later than their 1st birthday!
- Developing teeth on tiny patients is a big specialization and it may just be your thing. If you are interested in diving deeper and learning more, explore sites like the ADA’s mouthhealthy.org and mychildrensteeth.org.
fun fact: pediatric dentistry was formally referred to as pedodontics or paedodontics.
So there you have it; a small beginners look to the specialization of pediatrics!
Stay tuned for more of DAT Cracker’s exploration into the nooks and crannies of the dentistry field!