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Would You Do It Again

Discussion in 'Dental' started by Hope7, May 4, 2002.

  1. Hope7

    Hope7 Member
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    For anyone that has completed dental school, was it worth it? If you had another chance to make a career choice, would you choose dentistry again? What aspects of the career lived up to your expectations and what didn't?
     
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  3. wasabi007

    wasabi007 Senior Member
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    ooh~ what a good question...i'm going to bump this up to the top and hope that we can get dr.jeff to respond...i would love to hear his insight on this...

    let me add another question to it...would you recommend specializing to a new dental student? if you could do it again, would you have specialized or not? if so, what area of specialty?

    i know this is different for everyone, and you pick your area of specialty based on your interests...but it's just interesting to hear other people's opinions... :)
     
  4. Big_Poppa DDS

    Big_Poppa DDS Senior Member
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    dental school sucked, but I think general practice will be better. I enjoy doing the procedures but hated all the bs at school.
     
  5. MsPurtell

    MsPurtell Guest

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    I hate to ask this Big Poppa, but what kind of bs at school are you talking about. I really want to enjoy my school experience!

    Margaret
     
  6. Dr. Pedo

    Dr. Pedo Senior Member
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    big poppa,

    First congrats on the DDS. I'm finishing my first year and I second your bs opinion! The politics, boards II (ridiculous licensure crdts, westerns, etc...not to mention the burden on students for boards'-patient-accommadations ect...), the oxymoron process of not treating a board perfect patient in Nov. so you can use their class II in June! The only thing I can say is-----you're the lucky one!!!!!!!!!

    Good luck with everything
     
  7. JML1DDS

    JML1DDS Member
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    I enjoyed dental school. There was a tremendous amount of BS. I was really interested in the medical aspect of Dentistry, and I don't think we get enough medicine in our training. I am about to finish my pedo. residency, and still don't think we got enough!! (even though we got a ton more in the residency than in Dental school.) If you are interested in a specialty then specialize, but be sure you enjoy it, because residency is worse than dental school. All in all, dentists will lead better and easier lives than most professions and we will make good money. If I had it to do over again I would probably go to dental school and still pick Pedo. or OMS to specialize.
     
  8. Big_Poppa DDS

    Big_Poppa DDS Senior Member
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    The BS I am talking about is for example:

    1. Getting scolded for not wearing a tie, I am 26 years old and I will wear scrubs if I want to.

    2. Getting your whole TX plan changed after it has been approved by some smart ass cocky dentist who thinks his way is the only way

    3. Waiting in line for a prep check for an occlusal amalgam

    4. Paying your any of your patients debts before they give you your degree

    5. Having 2 doctors in the whole school who can check Quality Control for Pros. Why can't any Prosthodontist check my custom tray.

    6. Setting Denture teeth

    7. No Perio faculty on the floor - ever

    8. Mandatory Attendance sign in for clinic even when you are done with all your requirements

    9. Having a lazy group secretary who pages you 10 X a day because she is to lazy to get off her ass and look for you.

    Don't take this the wrong way, I did not hate dental school but I think the faculty treat you like S*$t unless you suck up to them, I could definitly see differential tx in my class and I think its BS. We all paid the same tuition and we should all get the same tx whether we have long hair, short hair, facial hair, wear scrubs, or a tie.
     
  9. MsPurtell

    MsPurtell Guest

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    Thanks for the lowdown Big Poppa. I'm no good at sucking up, but it seems essential to getting by in dental school, or perhaps any grad program. I'll have to try my best....while hoping it doesn't all wear me thin!

    Margaret
     
  10. gryffindor

    Dentist 10+ Year Member

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    Margaret, sucking up will be KEY for you especially since you are attending a state school. Now that we are starting clinic, we have to interact more with people who are not dentists but run the clinics. State employees are strictly on-the-clock and from my experience, require a great deal of sucking-up-to to stay on their better sides, especially since they control a huge part of our clinical activities
    1. assigning good patients
    2. scheduling appointments with potential patients
    3. working out bills and accounts for your patients
    4. adjusting credit for work you did but THEY lost the paperwork for proving you did it
    5. holding up your clinic priveleges when one piece of paper gets misplaced or mismarked
    6. retrieving charts for your patients when you have an emergency appt
    The list can go on...

    I've also noticed the differential treatment of the students by the faculty. Not all faculty, but there are definitely some male instructors who hang out by certain female students ALL OF CLASS and the same can be said about some female instructors that like to sit down and do the work for certain male students while brushing aside any female students who might have a question. Sucking up is key for these faculty who like to gravitate to one gender-specific section of the room for the entire lab period. I have done it myself and am (hopefully) not on anyone's bad side yet. I just make sure they know my name and know that I am interested in learning and not whining (students really like to whine) - b/c in a class of 90+, it is really easy to get lost in the shuffle and become a student who is looking to "just pass." It CAN make a difference come time for grades, I have seen it happen a few times now in laboratory classes...
     
  11. DrJeff

    DrJeff Senior Member
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    Oh boy, what a fun topic! First off, I can say that 5 years after graduating with 2 years of residency and 3 years of private practice under my belt that I'm very glad that I'm in the profession. I really enjoy going to work each day (or atleast the 3 1/2 days a week that makes up full time for me :D ). You are very well respected in your community, you make a very good living, you are constantly asked to think on your feet and solve problems, and lastly your MD friends are very jealous that your in a profession not governed by HMO's!

    Now as for would I do dental school over again. Let's put it this wasy about how I feel about certain professors in my dental school. Last Friday was the Alumni golf tournament for my dental school, and I played in it. I saw one of the professors who was just plain and simply a stubborn, old, royal S.O.B. who seemed to derrive great satisfaction in systematically breaking down dental students bit by bit until they were nothing more than a piece of primordial ooze. I was so tempted (as was the other 3 in my foursome) to tee up a ball and make him the target. Of my foursome which had alum's that were 2 years out, 2 that were 5 years out, and one that was 13 years out, NONE of us have written a check to the school(except to pay off the loans), and we listed off 5 professors who need to retire before we'll open up the check books! I still say that one of the lowest points of my life was the last few moments as I was begging and pleading to get the last signature on my sign out sheet before graduation. Until the old school, dead wood instructors are out of the full time positions, then dental school will continue to unfortunately be an experience in hazing <img border="0" alt="[Wowie]" title="" src="graemlins/wowie.gif" />

    Ultimatelty though, remember that it most definately is worth it when the hazing is done <img border="0" alt="[Clappy]" title="" src="graemlins/clappy.gif" /> But there will be some frustration and some serious moments of doubt along the way.
     
  12. iflossdaily

    iflossdaily Membership Revoked
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    Did any of you use a placement agency to find a practice after graduation? How much assistance did your school provide in finding employment?

    Also, do dentists actively recruit students to join their practice while the latter are still in school?

    I'd like to know how those of you who just graduated/are dentists went about the job search..
    thanks.
     
  13. Big_Poppa DDS

    Big_Poppa DDS Senior Member
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    Hey Dr. Jeff,

    Did you go to marquette? Just kidding but its true, I will not donate any money until certain instructors retire or expire which ever comes first. I don't really wish death upon anyone but it sounded good.

    Anyway, Marquette was really good about job placement. We had a career fair in January and that is where I met my new boss. Also, we got a ton of information about loan repayment programs.
     
  14. DrJeff

    DrJeff Senior Member
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    Tips for finding a practice after graduation. You can go through your school, some are better than others with placement(alot has to do with happy alumni, and a few of us have already spoken on that one! :D ) Two, real good sources to look for practices, especially if you know what geographic area you want to goto. First, contact the state dental society in your desired state, the keep a "want-add" list that is in their monthly/bi-monthly journals with opportunities. Often they can put you in contact with either someone looking for an associate/buy-out, or even put you in contact with a more geographically precise locator, the county/regional state dental society component president (i.e. for me it's the Northeast Connecticut dental society). Another potential source of finding a job is contact one of the major dental suppliers (i.e. a rep for Sullivan Schein, Patterson, or Desco), the reps know which Doc's are looking to build new rooms, or talking about building new rooms and wanting to expand their practices. The third idea of places to look would be through some of the dental practice brokers (i.e. <a href="http://www.dentalbroker.net," target="_blank">www.dentalbroker.net,</a> <a href="http://www.jimkasper.com," target="_blank">www.jimkasper.com,</a> <a href="http://www.aftco.com)" target="_blank">www.aftco.com)</a> the can do a very good job at helping you locate a practice for either an associate position, or a buy-out, and generally have a wide geographic range/ practice size range.

    Speaking from personal experience, the 2 practices that I've been in I found in the following ways. The first one was via an add in the a component society of the CT State Dental association news letter, and my current practice (the one I'm about to start buying into :D <img border="0" title="" alt="[Eek!]" src="eek.gif" /> ) I found via some contacts I made while in ASDA. Bottom line, there are ALOT of practices out there, so you don't need to jump at the first opportunity you see, be selective, look around, and bottom line, try and negotiate as good a deal for yourself as possible, since as we all know there are more dentists retiring nowadays than are graduating from dental school, so you're in demand!!!
     
  15. groundhog

    groundhog 1K Member
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    Hazing is common in a lot of training environments. However, it is not as bad as it once was. When I got drafted, I learned in basic training that those who get harrassed the most are usually the ones who view the baloney as personal attacks rather than just part of the game that is being played. Folks do muich better in training situations if they can adopt a "don't let em see you sweat" rather than a "look at my wounds" mentality.

    Things could be worse. Prior to the end of WWII, Japanese military recruits were routinely beaten unconscious by the officers and nco's while in basic training. Hooh Yah.
     
  16. Big_Poppa DDS

    Big_Poppa DDS Senior Member
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    I disagree, Hazing made me avoid doing procedures on certain days and only doing pros 2 half days a week. How is that good for someone just learning. Thursday afternoons were so bad that most of my class just took the afternoon off from clinic. We had one dr. ask you every time you did a prophy what the purpose of a plaque index was, come on get real!!
     
  17. groundhog

    groundhog 1K Member
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    Big Pappa,
    Let me assure you that I do no approve of the harrassment form of training. I think it is counterproductive. I was merely offering folks a method to survive the situation when it is encountered. Believe me, harrassers love to "see em sweat" and will turn up the heat on someone whom they perceive as weak. Most of the folks on the sidelines will do nothing and some are like chickens who will even jump in and help peck a wounded collegue to death.

    Like I said, the hazing issue is slowly getting better. When I was in training, the linemen apprentices were expected to hang out with the crew in the bars after work, get loaded, and then be ready to climb up the steel towers and start a full days work the following morning. That is not tolerated nearly as much today. However, the daily verbal abuse is still pretty much the norm in that arena.
     

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