Five Things You Need to Become a Dentist

If you're considering a career as a dentist, you may be wondering what it takes to become one. Of course, you'll need to complete dental school and obtain the appropriate licensure, but there are also other skills and attributes that will come in handy throughout your dental career. Here are five things you need to become a successful dentist.

Strong Hand-Eye Coordination

As a dentist, you'll be working inside a patient's mouth, often with limited visibility. This means you'll need to develop precise hand-eye coordination to work with small dental tools to clean, extract, or fill teeth. In dental school, you'll get ample practice in developing hand-eye coordination, but you'll also need to consistently work on it to keep your skills sharp. Playing sports, video games, and musical instruments can all help with developing hand-eye coordination.

Ability to Communicate Clearly

Becoming a dentist requires you to have excellent communication skills to discuss treatment plans and procedures with patients. You'll need to be able to explain complicated procedures in simple language, listen to your patient's concerns and feedback, and tailor your communication style to each patient's needs. By developing excellent communication skills, you'll be better equipped to build trust and rapport with your patients.

Strong Attention to Detail

Dentistry is all about precision, and your success as a dentist depends on your ability to pay attention to small details. From examining X-rays to performing complex procedures, you'll need to pay close attention to every aspect of dental care. You'll also need to develop a keen eye for identifying potential dental problems before they become more serious.

Desire to Learn

Dentistry is constantly evolving, and the best dentists never stop learning. Keeping up with the latest research and techniques is essential for providing the best care possible for your patients. This means attending continuing education courses, reading industry publications, and staying up-to-date with the latest dental technology.


Dental procedures can be uncomfortable and, in some cases, painful. As a dentist, you'll need to have empathy for your patients to understand their pain and build trust with them. This means taking the time to listen to your patients, explaining what you're doing, and making sure they feel comfortable throughout the procedure.

Becoming a dentist requires more than just completing dental school and getting licensed. You'll need to develop a range of skills and attributes, including strong hand-eye coordination, excellent communication skills, a keen attention to detail, a desire to learn, and empathy for your patients. By cultivating these skills, you'll be better equipped to provide high-quality dental care to your patients and build a successful dental career.

For more info about becoming a dentist, contact a local professional.