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Any fun or life in dental school?

Discussion in 'Pre-Dental' started by applicant, Apr 29, 2002.

  1. applicant

    applicant Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 19, 2001
    How much work is dental school?
    Is it really hard and you have to be always working in dental school during the 4 years?
    What about after dental school?

    I would appreciate if anyone can give me detail input in each dental school year(1st,2nd,3rd,4th).
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  3. groundhog

    groundhog 1K Member 10+ Year Member

    Nov 1, 2000
    My dentists and the dental students that I know all give a similar report. Absent a few intermittant respites, dental school is by and large hard work with few immediate rewards coming ones way. Once out of school, dentistry is a wonderful career full of rewards.
  4. Yah-E

    Yah-E Toof Sniper 10+ Year Member


    To answer your questions:

    1)Q: How much work is dental school?

    A: Although I don't start dental school until next year, I have many friends that are current dental students in various dental schools in the U.S. Dental schools are A LOT of work from what I've heard. Some would even say it's harder than medical school in some cases, for instance, the first two years, dental and medical schools are fairly similar in their curriculi with all basic science courses (Biochemistry, Histology, Gross Anatomy, Physiology, Pathology, Microbiology, Neuroanatomy, and Immunology). With dental schools, in addition to all these basic science courses, we have pre-clinical laboratory courses that we have to attend that medical students do not have. According to some, dental schools are much more time consuming than medical schools.

    2) Q:Is it really hard and you have to be always working in dental school during the 4 years?

    A: Yes and No! Yes, because if you want to get good grades and be competitive for specialties after 4 years of pre-doctoral dental education, you must dedicate all your free time to your studies. To get in "some" specialties, you must aim to be in top 10% of your class speaking generally. The answer is partly No because dental students that I know (my friends) are some of the craziest partiers I know. They work hard and they play hard. Four years of dental school should not only be educational, but it should also be a great time in your academia life. You'll definitely have time to party and relax, trust me on this one.

    3) Q:What about after dental school?

    A: After your pre-doctoral dental education, you'll have two major path ways. One, you go into a practice and start to do dental work as general dentists. Two, you continue dental education with POST-DOCTORAL dental education (specialties = ENDO, ORAL SURGERY, ORTHO, PROSTHO, PEDO, PERIO, or Advance Education General Dentistry [AEGD] or General Practice Residency [GPR]) There's much to say about each of the post-doctoral dental education programs, we won't get into them here. Regardless which pathway you choose, I guarantee you that you'll also have fun doing it. Remember, "DENTISTRY IS FUN"!!

    General break down of 4 years of pre-doctoral dental education:

    Year 1: Basic Sciences (50%) and Pre-clinical labs (50%)

    (some dental schools will incorporate patient exposure at the end of year 1 or even during year 1 or during year 2)

    Year 2: More Basic Sciences (40%) and More Pre-clinical labs (60%)

    Year 3: Clinic exposure (70%) and lectures on specialties (30%)

    Year 4: General and Specialty Clinics (90%) and Electives (10%)

    Again, this 4 year curriculum outline is VERY general. Every dental school will vary from this curriculum backbone. If you're interested in a particular dental school, I would suggest you to look up their school's website and look for their curriculum structure.

    To sum, dental school will be tough and challenging, but it also should a great time in your life. Will you have fun during dental school, you bet ya!

    Hope this helped.

  5. applicant

    applicant Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 19, 2001
    I was more interested in the amount of 'time' that has to be devoted to how much time on average they spend on studying during one week...
    like...would dental students have to devote all of their time on weekdays to study with no break?
    what about friday night and saturday? would they have to study during those times too?
  6. gryffindor

    gryffindor Dentist 10+ Year Member

    Feb 2, 2002
    The first three semesters, my schedule was something like school from 8 - 4 or 5, come home, eat dinner, go back to school for lab or study from 7 till about 1 or 2 with breaks in between (TV, phone, etc). On Friday and Saturday evenings, I would either sleep or go out with my friends. Sometimes I did find myself working those nights, other times I would just worry about all the work I had and watchn TV instead. First three semester, definitely spent day time Saturday studying or doing lab, as did many of my classmates b/c I would see them in the library or at the lab.

    But whenever I ask seniors about what their schedules, they always say "I only come in sometimes to do lab work. We don't study anymore." Instead, they tell me their schedules are something like Monday - movie night, Tuesday - golf, Wednesday - poker night, Thursday - dinner with friends night, and so on. Hmmmm, I'm definitely looking forward to that!

    I agree with Yah-E on answer number 2. I'm sure there are students who put in a lot less time and still pass, but the key word is pass. To do well, you have to invest the time.

    Beware the med students - many of my friends are in med school here. They have half the amount of class time we do and half the amount of studying, but they complain way more than the dental students about how hard it is, how much work it is, etc. The dental students just suck it up and take it for the first two years knowing that third year for dental students will not be hell, unlike their med counterparts.

    Wow Yah-E, I am impressed with all the statistics you came up with!
  7. Big_Poppa DDS

    Big_Poppa DDS Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Sep 29, 2001
    Sault Ste. Marie
    I pretty much stopped really studying after ndb 1. So basically my junior and senior year of dental school was not that bad, but stressful clinically first getting points done, then getting competencies done and NOW Finding board patients for the CRDTS EXAM this SUNDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Good luck!

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