Oral Health

Dentist Statistics in America

America’s Dentists

Dentist Statistics in America

Dentists have the best job in the U.S., according to U.S. News and World Report's rankings. The jobs selected are based on the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' predictions on which 100 jobs will grow the most between 2012 and 2022, the report said. "Those top 100 jobs, from the industries of business, creative, construction, health care, social services and technology, are then ranked based on projected openings, rate of growth, job prospects, unemployment rates, salary and job satisfaction," the report said.

In 2014, dentist had a hiatus from being U.S. News' No. 1 job. But it's now back on top, rising from its No. 3 spot in 2014, because it provides a nice blend of factors that make all the difference in the rankings. The first one is a low unemployment rate of 0.9 percent. The second is a decent work-life balance, especially compared to other health care jobs. Three, the take-home pay is simply phenomenal - in 2013, dentists earned an average salary of $164,570 and a median salary of $146,340. And four, the BLS predicts there will be 23,200 new job openings cropping up at a rate of nearly 16 percent between 2012 and 2022.

The BLS predicts new dental hygienist positions will open at a rapid-fire rate of 33.3 percent. Vanity inspires us to visit the dentist more - members of the baby boomer population, their kids and grandkids all take better care of their teeth than previous generations - but that same vanity also spurs increased openings for dental staff to clean and treat teeth.

  • As of 2015, there were close to 196,000 dentists working in the United States
  • More than 20% of dentists practice a certain specialty or area of expertise
  • Currently, there are 66 dental schools in the US. Employment of dentists is projected to grow faster than many other health occupations in the next decade

Over half of dental patients see their dentist every six months. However, virtually all American adults have tooth decay, and more than a quarter have cavities that have not been treated, a new government survey finds. Americans may be known around the world for having strong, white teeth, but the dentist sees something different inside a patient’s mouth. Approximately 91 percent of U.S. adults aged 20–64 had dental caries in permanent teeth in 2011–2012, the report finds. By the time they hit 65, 96 percent of Americans have tooth decay, the survey found. According to the American Dental Association, tooth decay is the most common chronic disease in children in the U.S., five times as common as asthma. A lot has to do with access to dentists. People without health insurance coverage for dental care, or living in areas where dentists are not common, are more likely to have tooth decay, and far more likely to go without fillings.

Although most Americans have tooth decay, the situation is far improved from past generations. Tooth brushing, fluoridation and better dental care have all helped. Dental industry is on the rise and the fact that dentists are among most popular professions can only make the general situation in America much better.