University of Wisconsin–Madison

Dentist (DDS)

Work Activities/Work Locations

  • Dentists diagnose and treat diseases, injuries, and malformations of teeth, gums, and related oral structures.
  • Examine patients to determine conditions and diseases using x-rays and a variety of dental instruments.
  • Clean, fill, extract and replace teeth and provide preventive dental services such as instruction on proper diet, brushing and flossing as well as placing protective plastic sealants on teeth, straightening teeth, and performing corrective surgery on the gums and supportive bones to treat gum disease.
  • Most are in private practice and usually work with a Dental Hygienist, Dental Assistant, and office and billing staff.
  • May be a part of a dental or medical group, or they may work in a hospital, Public Health Department, or the military.

Advantages and Disadvantages

  • There is an EXTREME shortage of Dentists in Wisconsin. Soon there will be entire counties without a Dentist.
  • Dentists like helping people. Pediatric Dentists love to work with and treat children.
  • Usually enjoy prestige in the community and higher incomes.

 Education: 6-8 years

 Patient Interaction: High

 Physical Activity: Low

 Salary: $163,744

 Job Growth: High

Getting Started

Career Outlook

Number Employed in 2014 (Wisconsin): 1,920
Number Employed in 2014 (U.S.): 129,000
Expected Employment in 2024 (U.S.): 152,300
Percent Employment Growth (2014-2024): 18%
Expected Annual Openings: 4,960
Median Salary in 2014 (Wisconsin): $163,744

Salary information is located at Career One Stop

Wisconsin AHEC Health Careers Information Center provides the most current salary information available from CareerOneStop. CareerOneStop will have a lapse between when the information is gathered and when it is released.

  • Dentists usually work 32 hours a week, Monday thru Friday.
  • They may be on call for emergencies.
  • Dentists can devote another two to five years of postgraduate study to their field of specialization… Endodontics, Orthodontics, Prosthodontis, Oral Surgery, Biomaterials, etc.
  • Dentists who want to teach or conduct research usually spend an additional 2 to 5 years in advanced training in programs.