Parenthood and dentistry: can they coexist?
For childless dentists considering the prospect of balancing their busy, thriving career with parenthood, it’s an important question. And the answer is equally as critical for current parents considering a career in dentistry.
We’ll say it unanimously – parenthood and dentistry go hand-in-hand.
The dentist lifestyle accommodates parental duties, offering flexibility that allows you to fully experience the excitement of raising children.
Below, we’ll delve into how a career in dentistry meshes seamlessly with parenthood and growing your family.
Dentistry is an excellent profession for working mothers and fathers. Most dentists own their practice, meaning they set their hours to meet their daily needs.
For instance, you can start the day at 10 AM and finish with your last patient at 4 PM. This way, you’re helping your young ones get ready for the school day, and you’ll be home soon after their school day is done.
This schedule-based freedom allows for quality time with your young ones in the morning and evening. You’ll enjoy family meals with lots of communication and involvement in your young ones’ lives.
Other dental professionals work part-time as associates, which is also conducive to a healthy work-life balance. You still get to choose your working days and hours in these positions.
While pride and passion are massive parts of being a dentist, the profession doesn’t have to be your entire identity. Nor does it need to dictate your whole life.
Instead, prioritizing your family can help you get more from dentistry because your work won’t become a weight on your shoulders. Thus, you’ll approach each workday with enthusiasm and heightened focus.
Recent studies shed light on the importance of parents’ relationships with healthcare professionals during the first two years of a child’s life.
Specifically, tailored support from healthcare professionals is pivotal during those formative stages.
The takeaway is how, as a dentist, you’re already a healthcare professional. Thus, you’re streamlining the support needed to bolster those essential early-stage building blocks.
Of course, treating your child can present a conflict of interest. However, as a healthcare professional, you know what to look for in the ideal patient-practitioner relationship.
We’ve already brought up one of the chief advantages of a dental career – work-life balance. Whether you’re a part-time associate or own your practice, your schedule is conducive to being present for your children.
Beyond that, a standout advantage of dentistry is its broad scope, meaning you’ll find a treatment type that offers you fulfillment.
For instance, are you focused on helping people heal by reducing their pain?
Then, you might want to focus on procedures like root canals. A benefit here is that offsetting someone’s pain almost guarantees they’ll refer their friends and family to you.
On the other hand, you might be more interested in cosmetic dentistry.
In the above instance, you get to embrace the artistry of dentistry. It’s possible to transform a patient’s mouth when it’s in a state of disrepair, giving them a smile worth bragging about. For many dentists, providing such treatments are a source of immense joy because they change someone’s life for the better.
These areas of focus only scratch the surface. But they highlight how you can find the dental niche that offers you the most fulfillment. Given that you’ll be balancing your dental work with parenthood, you want to ensure you’re doing the work you love, which you’re empowered to in this incredible profession.
While dentistry offers plenty of time-based flexibility, unforeseen emergencies and busier days are part of the profession. Even the best-laid schedule can get turned on its head.
Thus, honing your time-management skills should be a top priority.
To combat any unpredictability, we suggest scheduling your most significant, demanding procedures at the beginning of the day. Then, perform the more straightforward work toward the end of the day.
Another potential option is to break from the traditional Monday-Thursday, 8 AM to 5 PM weekly schedule. Compressing that to Monday-Wednesday and working longer for those days gives you a whole extra day with your young ones.
With these helpful tips, you’re now equipped to take on a profession in dentistry and combine it with the fulfilling challenge of parenthood. The two lifestyles go hand-in-hand–as long as you prioritize appropriately and insightfully!