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dentalinthemental

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Maintain good grades and continue networking. Apply to good programs and see what happens next year.

Plenty of time to work. And you have little debt so that’s great.

I applied to GPRs and after interviewing withdrew from match because I didn’t interview anywhere that I thought would be good fit for me beyond the program’s location (all CA).
 
Did you apply this cycle or have you started working yet? If so... what was your experience with working/using CE instead of attending a GPR

I’m a 2015 grad.

With regards to CE, it just depends on the type of offices you find yourself working in; the type of dentistry done there; the fees they charge for that work; and the owner’s tolerance for you to “learn” using their patients.

When you own, time away from your practice is expensive, it’s not just the cost of the course - it’s the lost production, the travel and time away from your family.
 
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This decision comes down to the quality of the residency vs the quality of your potential employer. I’m a relatively recent grad (2019), and only just now am starting to do some of the more expensive/advanced CE. I went to work after dental school because I wasn’t interested in GP residencies, and I learned how to do advanced procedures while at work. I’ve mentored newer hire dentists who did GPR/AEGD, and those who came straight from school and I didn’t notice any real difference among them. They all needed the same amount of hand holding on crown preps, endo, surgery, practice management (just as I did when I started). No one was truly ”better” with or without a residency, the only difference was the willingness to learn something outside their comfort zone.
With that being said, I think the best thing for you to do is to have an idea in your head of what dentistry YOU want to do. Then question these programs and potential employers on what types of dentistry they do, the volume that’s being done, how much of this volume will YOU get to do, and how much true mentoring you are going to receive on each of these things. But I also understand that it’s also hard to make a decision on these things without real world context, because you’ll only have perspective from a dental student’s standpoint. No matter what you do though, in the meantime it’s super important to maintain your connections, develop good contacts with professors and clinic faculty because you never know if you ever want to do more advanced training in the future, which may need good recommendations from faculty.
I was lucky because I had a work mentor teach me complex tx planning, implants, complex surgical ext, molar RCTs, extensive crown/bridge in a really busy office that just had tons of volume to do. I learned everything on the job, and was confident in doing all those things by myself within a couple months.
Feel free to shoot me a DM if you have questions!
 
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I think it really depends on many factors whether it's worth to do an AEGD/GPR or not. First one being, the quality of the program and what will you be doing. If it's going to be an extra year of dental school where you'll be doing mainly bread and butter dentistry, I don't think it's worth it because you can gain speed and confidence in private practice. The value of a residency is in training you to perform advanced procedures (implants, veneers, molar endo, third molar extractions, ortho, perio surgery, sedation, etc.) that you didn't learn in dental school, and for which you'd have to pay thousands of dollars in CE. In a residency, you're learning in a supportive environment under someone else's license, so you can learn a lot in a year without worrying about being by yourself if you encounter a complication. Some may argue you can learn the same if you find a good mentor in private practice, however that's easier said than done. It's an ideal situation in an ideal world and rare nowadays.

Another factor is your age and debt, life situation. If you're young, relatively low debt, no family to support yet, I think that's an ideal situation to invest one more year in your learning and broadening your skills. Doing an AEGD also gives you more negotiating power in some cases when looking for a job.

Make a list of what procedures you'd like to learn in a residency. Then, do your research and make a list of programs that will teach you those. When it's closer to the application/interview cycle, go and visit the programs (really helps make you stand out). Finally, keep your grades up and keep grinding so you have the freedom to choose what to do when you finally decide. You never know where life takes you and your plans may be completely different in a few months, for me it was that way. Having a good rank gives you the opportunity to decide.

Good luck!
 
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This decision comes down to the quality of the residency vs the quality of your potential employer. I’m a relatively recent grad (2019), and only just now am starting to do some of the more expensive/advanced CE. I went to work after dental school because I wasn’t interested in GP residencies, and I learned how to do advanced procedures while at work. I’ve mentored newer hire dentists who did GPR/AEGD, and those who came straight from school and I didn’t notice any real difference among them. They all needed the same amount of hand holding on crown preps, endo, surgery, practice management (just as I did when I started). No one was truly ”better” with or without a residency, the only difference was the willingness to learn something outside their comfort zone.
With that being said, I think the best thing for you to do is to have an idea in your head of what dentistry YOU want to do. Then question these programs and potential employers on what types of dentistry they do, the volume that’s being done, how much of this volume will YOU get to do, and how much true mentoring you are going to receive on each of these things. But I also understand that it’s also hard to make a decision on these things without real world context, because you’ll only have perspective from a dental student’s standpoint. No matter what you do though, in the meantime it’s super important to maintain your connections, develop good contacts with professors and clinic faculty because you never know if you ever want to do more advanced training in the future, which may need good recommendations from faculty.
I was lucky because I had a work mentor teach me complex tx planning, implants, complex surgical ext, molar RCTs, extensive crown/bridge in a really busy office that just had tons of volume to do. I learned everything on the job, and was confident in doing all those things by myself within a couple months.
Feel free to shoot me a DM if you have questions!
How did the mentor have time to teach you those things while they have their own patients?
 
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