Jobs in the dental field have their perks. From flexible hours to steady income, a job in dentistry can be very comfortable! However, when it gets down to it, deciding on a specific job can be tough.
The good news? You can keep your options open. Many new and unique careers and jobs have been created in our industry over the past few years. Take a look at 6 of these alternative jobs that are currently available in dentistry.
Brands will pay research companies to test their products or help them develop new ones for the market. From statisticians to scientists, a career in dental research can be very fulfilling.
While these sort of positions generally require a substantial amount of post-secondary education, there’s definitely a big need for dental researchers. The jobs are out there for those willing and wanting to work in important data.
For those who have already taken the leap into dentistry and are looking for a step up within jobs in the dental field, consider a dental educator position.
These positions range from tenured positions at a university to small consulting roles working with practices across the country. The important thing to consider before diving into education is the time commitment. You’ll likely need some years of education or training before you’re trusted as a teacher or consultant.
However, should you choose to work as an educator, the benefits can be very nice; long-term job security, stable salaries, and competitive benefits are available in many dental educator positions.
Every industry has an influencer. While it is relatively new to dentistry, it is wholly important to the overall business.
Across the country, tech-savvy entrepreneurs with jobs in the dental field are partnering with brands to promote products, practices, and new technologies. Millions of dollars are spent every year on influencer marketing. Take for example, Jennifer Plotnick — owner of Grand Street Dental in Brooklyn — who carefully crafts her Instagram feed for an engaged community of followers.
Here’s the caveat: you won’t become an influencer by just posting to Instagram or Twitter once or twice a week. Influencers carefully craft every aspect of their personal brand from voice to aesthetic. It’s a delicate art of balance and it’s a lot of work to run your own brand. Plus you have to remember: you are your own boss. You’ll need to network and stay committed if you want your page to grow.
However, should you nail down your aesthetic and partner with said brands, it can be incredibly lucrative. Your ability to craft a message and connect with an audience could make a big impact. Are you the next big dental digital star?
The next generation of dentists will likely be using technology that we can’t even fathom at this point in time. In fact, Chinese researchers are even experimenting with a robot that can perform dental implants on its own!
While you probably won’t see fully mechanical dentists anytime soon, there will be a booming need for new technologies (like the aforementioned “robot dentist”) in the industry — and someone’s got to make them.
Computer scientists and engineers are developing apps and other tools to help dentists clean, analyze, and diagnose oral health issues. If you prefer to work behind the scenes and develop the technologies that tomorrow’s dentists will use, you may consider a career in dental technology.
For those with great organizational or managerial skills and a passion for healthcare, you may enjoy a career working in a practice’s front office. Office managers and support staff help make a practice run smoothly. Without a dedicated front office staff, many dentists would be swamped with work and unable to perform their duties. They rely on their teams significantly.
As an office manager, you’ll be on the pulse of dentistry without having to get your hands into the actual procedures. It’s great for those looking for jobs in the dental field that allow them to help others in a comfortable environment.
While it’s one of the more rare jobs in the dental field, some professionals choose to carve their own path. Take our Founder and CEO Tonya Lanthier, for example, who created DentalPost after noticing a big need for a dedicated dental job board in the industry. She recently was featured in Inc.’s Annual Female Founders 100 List.
Entrepreneurship is a tough path; while there’s a lot of risks involved in running your own company, success and perseverance can bring you an exponential amount of reward. If you have a great idea, a solid business plan, and a willing spirit, entrepreneurship could be the career path in dentistry for you.
More unique jobs can be found here, especially if you’re starting a dental career later in life.
Updated April 30th, 2021
Originally published April 10th, 2018
Posted March 3, 2021
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