For practicing dentists, do you ever reflect back on your life in dental school/your grades? : Dentistry

I just finished my first year, and my class rank is probably in the bottom 25% primarily because I had to remediate one of the simulation labs. My didactics are pretty strong, and I did above average in indirect operative. I think this primarily attributable to the COVID-19 restrictions and limited lab time we had. There are definitely some “hand gods,” but I think I’m pretty much average to slightly above average with hand skills.

I was always a top notch student, I was in the top of my high school and college classes, but in dental school, I feel like I’m barely scraping by. I feel somewhat unsuccessful in an academic sense, but I’m content with just doing general dentistry (I really thought about specializing in perio or path, but I just don’t have the grades/dental school is enough of an academic challenge for me).

Did anyone have a similar experience in terms of struggling a lot in dental school compared to college? How did you push through school without comparing yourself to your classmates? And, do you find your class rank had any correlation with your success in your career?

This is something I’m curious about, especially because patients don’t know/care about your grades let alone where you went to school, thus it’s never really brought up during appointments haha.

Thank you all!

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Remote work options for DDD : Dentistry

So my life situation is changing and I am starting to consider more broad options. My original plan was doing locum tenens work but a friend mentioned remote work for insurance companies after having 5 years experience. I’ve also heard about doing consulting for manufacturers or other companies that may require a DDS expertise. Don’t know much about that. So long and short of it what is out there for remote work? Key is to travel and work and if I can just do it from a laptop that would be the dream job.

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How long after dental school did you buy/build you own dental practice? : Dentistry

I bought my practice 4 months after graduating. However, I knew from my 2nd semester of 1st year I was not going to specialize and focused all my efforts on clinical courses and put just enough in to pass the board prep didactic classes. I saved every scrap of dental supply other people were tossing as they graduated, heck I’ve never bought Ortho wire, mixing bowls, etc, I’m still using slow speed motors thrown away by graduating 4th years 15 years ago. You’re going to make mistakes, but as the owner you’ll get paid for them. Associateships and corporate jobs are a death spiral for the profession. You don’t need then, especially if you do a GPR or AEGD, which I did not. I also used my practice management class project as the basis for my practice purchase bank proposal. No sense in wasting my time on pretend projects.

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For those of you who did average/below average in dental school, how is the real world? : Dentistry

I’m about to finish my first year of dental school (I go to UoP, so only 2 more years), and I didn’t do as well as I had expected. Didactics I mainly got As and Bs, got one C in an intro Endo course (it was brutal — 60+ pages of reading a week for one stinking credit). Sim lab, I got a B in indirect operatory and a D in direct (had a couple bad practicals).

I ended up remediating direct, and definitely have a really good hand on preps and fills now.

I know clinic is different, but I always felt my preclinical preps and restorations were uglier than some of my classmates.

I am trying the best I can, and for now I’m focused on just making clinically acceptable work that will slowly become excellent as I develop more skill/practice more.

My grades probably put me in the bottom quarter of my class, which is kinda disheartening as I was at the top of my class in college (finished summa cum laude with a biochem degree).

I’ve also been devoting time to a lot of outside activities (clubs and research). My independent Dental research is actually taking off (got a couple companies/programs interested in investing).

Anyway, for those of you who were average to even below average grade-wise in dental school, did you find that this impacted you? Are my chances for potentially specializing down the road ruined?

I’d say I’m most interested in perio and pathology (both connect with my research/product development).

Thank you!

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Practice and student loans paid off, now what? : Dentistry

I own a practice where I am the only dentist, 1 FD, 1 FD/EFDA, 1 DA, 1 Full time RDH and several part time RDHs (2 hygiene columns daily except for Thursdays). We are currently open 4-5 days a week (open 2 Fridays a month). I would love to shorten my weeks. Any dentists out there own a practice where they only work 3.5 days a week and are closed the other days? Or do you have an associate working the days you aren’t in? Is it worth the headache of an associate? I am afraid to work less days and abandon my patients, staff. They may go somewhere else if I can’t offer them more days. There’s also the fear of dramatically reduced income and practice valuation in the future when I want to sell.

Any thoughts or experience you can share with me?

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internationally trained orthodontist looking for university programs in USA : Dentistry

Hello all,

I’m an internationally trained orthodontist (EU, female 30 yo).

I’m interested in enrolling in an advanced clinical training program to widen my knowledge, or research / PHD program in USA. Example for an advanced clinical training program is here – UCLA.

Does anybody know about some alternatives to do anything in orthodontics besides the 3 years long residency program? At a cost, volunteering or salaried.

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What are your thoughts on advantages and disadvantages of sodium fluoride, stannous fluoride and nano-hydroxyapatite? : Dentistry

I actually use one of the nano-hydroxyapatite toothpastes. Got curious while in dental school. I suppose I am still not 100% sure what I think about it, but years later I still haven’t had any cavaties and incipients I had have disappeared. Of course, since this coincides with going through dental school I probably just take hygiene a lot more seriously and technique improved, idk. But it makes sense in theory, so what the hell.

That being said, the low-foam, no taste is actually the bigger reason I still use it today. Toothpastes with a mint or whatever just do NOT taste clean to me anymore! And I can’t go back. So I buy the expensive toothpaste on Amazon, lol.

Funny side effect: gag reflex is slightly exaggerated. Not in any truly debilitating way, but it’s noticeable.

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