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How long would it take for me to become an Orthodontist, and where to I begin?

My name is Athalia, and i have just began my 10th grade year. In school, I am very interested in science/biology. My hobbies are softball, writing and reading. A topic that I'm passionate about is science/biology because it has to d o with the study of human life. I hope to become an Orthodontist, but am not sure where to start or what to prepare for. #science #biology #medical-school #medicine #doctor #orthodontist #teeth

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Amy’s Answer

Orthodontics is a specialty that people apply for either while they are in dental school or after they have graduated. It is a 2-year residency program that follows 4 years of dental school, which follows your undergraduate bachelor degree education (usually this also takes 4 years).

If your goal is to get into dental school, then you will need to complete all the necessary prerequisite courses while you are in undergrad. You can find out what these courses are on each dental school’s website. Nearly all schools have the same prerequisites. Your major in undergrad is entirely up to you, as long as you complete the courses necessary to apply to dental school. Majors like Biochemistry and Biology have a lot of overlap with the dental school prerequisites, but I had many classmates who were art or business majors in college. I think dental schools appreciate this and see the candidate as being more well-rounded.

You’ll have to maintain a competitive undergraduate GPA, get involved with your community, do volunteer work, and shadow dentists in order to be offered an interview at a dental school.

While in dental school, you will need to continue to achieve good grades and distinguish yourself in order to apply for and match to an orthodontic residency.

I hope this helps and good luck!!!

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Sheena’s Answer

<span style="color: rgb(85, 85, 85);">In order to become an orthodontist you must complete four years of dental school. Starting in High School if you have the ability to take anatomy and physiology would be great progressing in college to microbiology, as well as classes that apply more specifically to orthodontics, such as dental anatomy and occlusion, pediatric dentistry and dental materials. DON'T be a afraid to ask for job shading opportunities from colleges that offer dental programs or even local dental offices as well. It would allow you to gain first hand knowledge of what goes on in the office setting .</span>

Sheena recommends the following next steps:

Job Shadow -great experience as well as looks great on college application