Did you know that all orthodontists are dentists, but not all dentists are orthodontists? Becoming a certified orthodontist is a long process, that involves many years of schooling and practical learning. Dr. Chen went through this training to become an orthodontist? Curious what it took?
After graduating from college, a future-orthodontist must get a graduate degree as a dentist, and get a DDS, DMD, BDS, or equivalent. Once they graduate, they can apply to be a resident in an orthodontics program. Entrance to these programs are extremely competitive, and typically last 2-3 years. These programs can award a Master of Science degree or a Doctor of Science degree, depending on the student.
Every graduate must complete the written portion of the American Board of Orthodontics examinations. In order to become certified, a practicing orthodontist must present six cases that have been entirely treated by the orthodontist in question. Then, the orthodontist must appear in front of a panel of examiners to defend the clinical decisions regarding those cases. Once certified, the orthodontist can practice and make your smile more beautiful!
Being an orthodontist is an interesting and fun career that lets someone help their patients improve their lives. Next time you visit our office, ask Dr. Chen why he decided to become an orthodontist – and maybe think about becoming one yourself!