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A Career in Military Dentistry

Aug 17, 2007
The U.S Defense services are known for valor, discipline and humanitarian service. Numerous divisions of the defense services employ dentists at different military bases, all over the world. The army, navy and air force offer positions to dentists. Dental facilities are a part of all military hospitals and dispensaries, through out the United States, Alaska, and Hawaii.

Applicants for military dentistry must have a DDS or DMD degree from a recognized U.S. or Canadian medical university and should be citizen of the United States. Dental school graduates are required to have their licenses registered with the state authorities. Application forms, with credentials must be completed and submitted to the U.S military recruitment staff. Letters of recommendation from the military and state board are welcome. Interviews are carried out with one or more veteran dental officers on the board.

The newly commissioned dentists undergo a six-week military training. Selected junior officers are sent to the dental specialty training programs. The Military Commission for dentists initially lasts for a span of 2-4 years. After the initial period, the dentists can re-enlist with the Commission, with an increase in salary and avail of the special training and other incentives.

The First Commission assigns smaller clinics, with two or three dentists working together, offering opportunities for a variety of treatment experience. A rotation program is followed in Larger Dental facilities, where dental officers are allowed to perform endodontic, prosthetic, surgical or periodontal procedures. Such larger facilities only employ trained dental specialists, certified by the board.

Rank, grade and experience determine the salary. The initial pay package may increase if the person has participated in ROTC programs as an undergraduate student. An annual salary of $42,000 to $60,000 is offered to newly commissioned officers. Additional bonuses include home loans and medical treatment and are paid according to the U.S Military Commission. Bonus pay is awarded to active duty officers, after one year of service.

There are advantages for personnel interested in pursuing dentistry, while serving with the military. Military dentists earn a secure salary and additional opportunities for salary increases are available, depending on longevity of service tenure, merit and promotion. Office expenses are looked after by the military. Military benefits include self-medical care, a low-cost health care plan for family members and insurance in case disability or death. Dentists on active duty, enjoy a 30-days paid vacation, along with 11 paid holidays every year. The families of the dentists are provided with military security.

Dentists joining the military have ample of opportunities to refine their techniques and skills too. Clinical and analytical skills are improved through the military rotation system. Dentists within the military are encouraged to continue their education and research. Study leaves for medical students are granted annually, to attend and participate in CE courses and exams. The dentists are felicitated with an increase in their rank, grade and pay scale. Course registration fees, travel, and lodging are paid for by the military dental facility.

A military dentist is eligible for retirement pay and benefits after 20 to 22 years of military service. According to the U.S Military Pay Commission, retirement pay is equal to 40% of that of the last rank of active duty pay and up to 75%, if the person retires after putting in 30 years of service.
About the Author
Active Duty Military Specials. For more information go to www.earthmoverschool.com or phone 1.800.488.7364. Earthmoverschool.com has training over 30,000 Heavy Equipment Operators.
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