Most things in this world do not turn out perfect, including people’s smiles. Orthodontists and their assistants help people improve their smiles every day. Though some people think that the orthodontic industry is purely about fulfilling society’s superficial view on appearances, orthodontists and their assistants truly benefit the greater good. When people feel good about their appearances, their mental and social health is better. In some cases, orthodontic treatment is a health necessity, which makes orthodontists and their assistants just as important as any other health professional.
Why Consider a Career in Orthodontics
Most people do not receive satisfaction from accomplishments that only benefit them. While helping professions have their ups and downs, most people who work in those professions consider their work rewarding. A career in orthodontics is the epitome of a helping profession. Orthodontists and their assistants see people progress from having a deformed smile to a smile that is fit for Hollywood. Their patients’ progress is solely due to their efforts.
2. Low Stress
While a career in orthodontists has its moments with children squirming and adults asking 50 questions, the jobs in the orthodontic industry are ranked as low stress. The job of an orthodontist is ranked as low stress. The job of an orthodontists assistant falls under the same category as a dental hygienist and dental assistant, which are ranked as having an average stress level.
3. Flexible Schedule
Most orthodontists open their own practice; therefore, they can decide on the hours of operation. They also have the option of hiring another orthodontist to take their place while they are not on site. The job of an orthodontic assistant has also been ranked as offering a good work-life balance because most orthodontist offices operate on traditional weekday hours. Even if the orthodontist or whoever is in charge of making the hours decides to be open beyond regular business hours, they most likely will only keep the office open until noon on Saturdays. As businesses are competing with each other, more businesses are extending their hours beyond the traditional. The orthodontic industry does not seem to be going that route any time soon.
4. Job Security
Job growth for orthodontists is projected to grow 16 percent in the next decades, which is twice as average. This is due to the consistent need of orthodontic care and the selectiveness of pre-med programs and dental school. The job growth for orthodontic assistants is projected to grow 19 percent due to a large number of assistants an office requires to serve patients quickly and efficiently. The educational path to becoming an orthodontic assistant is much faster. The programs are typically around two years if attended full-time.
5. Variety in Job
People who are not cut out for sitting in front of a desk all day may be a right fit for a career in orthodontics because there is great variety in the job. While the goal and tasks are enduring, no two cases are the same. There is a lot of movement required.
Orthodontic patients typically require treatment that takes several years. This amount of time allows a relationship to be formed between the patient and staff. Patients can easily start to feel like family. Positive relationships can also lead to patients referring their friends and family.
Orthodontists’ salaries are well into the six figures. Most orthodontists make around 200,000 dollars a year. Those who have their own practice will have to invest some of their revenue into their business. The long education path to becoming an orthodontist also means that the orthodontist will need to be paying student loans for at least the first decade of his or her career. Orthodontic assistants make around 60,000 to 70,000 dollars a year, which is not bad for only two years of education and traditional work hours.