Remember when you were in school, and every year on the first day of class, there was an icebreaker where the teacher would go around the room and everyone would answer the funny or thought-provoking question posed.
Around middle school, these questions quickly shifted from “What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?” to “What do you want to do when you grow up?” Most students would say a superhero or famous to get a few laughs, while others might have said a lawyer or doctor.
Well, in honor of National Doctor’s Day, which falls on March 30, here’s a rundown on what you would need to do if you said you wanted to be an Orthodontist.
Like with most professions, you need to get your Bachelors first. Although you don’t have to major in a dental or pre-med track, you will need to complete a few biology, chemistry, and other science courses. Towards the end of your Junior year, you will need to take the Dental Admissions Test to apply to Dental School.
Before a Dental School will accept you, they will look at your Dental Admissions Test scores, college GPA, letters of recommendation, and the intensity of your undergraduate program. Once accepted to Dental School, you will spend the first 2 years back in the classroom setting, and the last 2 years in a clinical setting shadowing other doctors. Once you graduate, you will officially have your doctorate, but you will still need to take the National Board Dental Examination to be able to practice.
If you just want to practice as a Dentist, you’re done. However, if you would like to be an Orthodontist, you will need to complete specialization training. Admission into Orthodontic Residencies is extremely competitive. Only 1 in 15 applicants is accepted. Once you finish your residency, you will have to pass board certifications, and then you will be free to practice as an orthodontist!
So now you know a tad bit of how to become an Orthodontist!