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General Dentist Salary (United States)

Compensation for General Dentists in the United States is generous, with average pay surpassing six figures annually ($126K). Total cash compensation for General Dentists runs from $79K to $207K depending on bonuses that can occasionally exceed $25K and profit sharing that can reach almost $98K. Experience level is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by geography. The majority of General Dentists claim high levels of job satisfaction. Male General Dentists are more prevalent than women among those who took the survey — 61 percent of professionals. Although the larger part have medical coverage and a little less than half have dental coverage, roughly a third claim no health benefits at all. The numbers in this rundown were provided by PayScale's salary survey participants.
General Dentist Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$74,011 - $205,657
(Median)
74K
98K
120K
150K
210K
MEDIAN: $121,066
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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General Dentist Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$40.70 - $85.53
(Median)
41
55
66
75
86
MEDIAN: $65.00
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$70K$140K$210K
Salary
$74,011 - $205,657  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $25,488  
Profit Sharing
$4,085 - $97,871  
Commission
$30.52 - $34,392  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$78,571 - $207,034  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 693
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50$100$150
Hourly Rate
$40.70 - $85.53  
   
Overtime
$0.00 - $125.00  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$100K$200K$300K
Bonus
$0.00 - $25,488  
   
Commission
$30.52 - $34,392  
Profit Sharing
$4,085 - $97,871  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$78,571 - $207,034  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 129
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Job Description for General Dentist

A general dentist evaluates the patient's oral health status and develops a treatment plan suited to the patient's needs. The general dentist is responsible for treating diseases such as gingivitis, healing dental injuries, and perfecting malformations of the teeth and gums. They will examine patients by conducting interviews, taking X-rays, and performing other dental diagnostic procedures. They clean teeth using modern dental tools. General dentists also identify and fill cavities. They extract rotted teeth, as well as those that may be pushed out due to overcrowding. They replace teeth with false teeth implants. They educate patients as to how to best take care of their teeth to prevent cavities and plaque. Dentists must make patients fully aware of the necessity of excellent dental hygiene. They also typically help to supervise office staff, including hygienists, dental assistants, and receptionists. They may be required to make referrals to dental specialists to deal with issues such as braces or oral surgery. Some general dentists also take care of supplies for the dental office and coordinate required lab services. General dentists should work to develop relationships with their patients and encourage patients to come in for regular check ups and cleaning twice a year. They should be aware of the connection between tooth-related conditions and other diseases. Problems in the oral cavity may indicate diabetes, osteoporosis, or cancer. Gum disease may also be indicative of diabetes or heart disease. General dentists can prescribe medications, including anything from prescription-strength toothpastes and mouthwashes to more serious drugs such as antibiotics, sedatives, and other pain relief medications.
General Dentist Tasks
  • Advise and instruct patients regarding preventive dental care, the causes and treatment of dental problems, and oral health care services.
  • Examine teeth, gums, and related tissues, using dental instruments, x-rays, and other diagnostic equipment.
  • Administer anesthetics to limit the amount of pain experienced by patients during procedures.
  • Diagnose and treat diseases, injuries, and malformations of teeth, gums and related oral structures, and provide preventive and corrective services.

Dentist Job Listings

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Pay by Experience Level for General Dentist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For General Dentists, level of experience appears to be a somewhat less important part of the salary calculation — more experience does not correlate to noticeably higher pay. Respondents with less than five years' experience take home $115K on average. In contrast, those who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably higher average of $135K. On average, General Dentists make $143K following one to two decades on the job. General Dentists who have stuck around for more than two decades see earnings that are only slightly higher than those of folks who have worked for 10 to 20 years; the more senior group makes around $145K on average.

Pay Difference By Location

San Jose
up arrow 19%
National Average
$126,000
Houston
up arrow 5%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
Home to some of the best pay for General Dentists, San Jose offers exceptional salaries, 19 percent above the national average. Trailing the national average by 5 percent, Houston is the market with the smallest paychecks.
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Experience Affects General Dentist Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 16%
Experienced
up arrow 13%
Mid-Career
up arrow 7%
National Average
$126,000
Entry-Level
up arrow 9%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied Image
Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5 based on 185 votes.

Gender

Female
39%
female alumni
 
Male
61%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
7%
1-4 years
36%
5-9 years
15%
10-19 years
19%
20 years or more
24%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 56% dental benefits Dental: 47%
vision benefits Vision: 26% employee benefits None: 34%