Career Profile: Director of Dental...

Career Profile: Director of Dental Surgery

by Susan Huebert
Jobs People Do | JobsPeopleDo.com

When you get a cavity in your tooth, you need to get a filling. If you have a more serious problem, you might need surgery. A director of dental surgery can help make that happen.

Becoming a director of dental surgery involves a lot of education. Normally, people in this area have training and experience in dentistry. People spend at least three or four years in university to become dentists. Specializing in dental surgery could take a few extra years in programs that include practical experience and classroom work. Most universities have programs in dentistry, and some community colleges might have a few courses in the field.

Directors of dental surgery need to know about dentistry, but they also need to know about business. Getting training in office management is a good idea, since directors often need to deal with the same kinds of issues that any other manager would face. Hiring employees, making sure that the office has enough supplies, and keeping track of surgery schedules might all be part of the work.

Dental surgeons, who are often called oral surgeons, generally start out with earning about $176,000 per year and can earn more than $345,000 by the time they retire. Depending on where they work, directors of dental surgery can earn similar salaries or even more.

Directors of dental surgery can spend some time sitting, although in busy offices they might not have many opportunities to relax. Still, this is a good job for dentists or dental surgeons who are physically unable to continue with their jobs. Shaky hands, for example, might make active dentistry impossible, but working as a director is an option for people who are no longer able to practice dentistry, or also as a first choice for people who enjoy that kind of work.

Like all jobs, the work of director of dental surgery can be a good or bad choice, depending on what people are able and willing to do. The job has a lot of responsibility, and it can be very stressful when things go wrong. If a patient has a bad experience with surgery, for example, the director might need to deal with the complaint and any lawsuit that might come up. Scheduling surgery can also be difficult sometimes, especially when an operation takes longer than expected or there is an emergency that has to come first.

Being flexible is very important for people in this position, but it is also necessary to be organized so that the work can get done. Directors need to be able to work alone at times but also be good with people. If two surgeons want the same time in the operating room, for example, the director might need to talk to them to work out a solution. In case of a major crisis, such as a fire or flood in the building, the director might need to take charge and help decide what to do next. If this describes you, why not consider becoming a director or dental surgery?


Canadian Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. “About This Profession.” https://www.caoms.com/about- profession

Canadian Dental Association. “Dental Specialties.” https://www.cda-adc.ca/en/ becoming/becoming/specialties/

Ontario Society of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons. “Credentials.” https://www.osoms.ca/page- 1335625.

Payscale.com. “Dentist Salary.” https://www.payscale.com/ research/CA/Job=Dentist/Salary.

Salary Expert.com “Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon.” https://www.salaryexpert.com/salary/job/oral-and-maxillofacial-surgeon/canada.

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