Dentistry and Balance [Part 1]:
If you know me, then you know how much I LOVE dentistry. I am so passionate about it and having my own practice is the culmination of a tremendous amount of hard work and dedication. With that being said however, dentistry is also known to be a mentally and physically taxing profession — and as my friend @freudandfashion
shared, dentists have a higher rate of depression and anxiety than the general population (as well as suicide and drug addiction rates). I suspect some of the reasons why include:
🦷 higher costs of dental school (if you go
private, you graduate with almost half a million in debt)
🦷not considering general practice residency/ advanced education after dental school (typical due to pressure for loan repayment)
🦷frustration upon realizing that real world dentistry is totally different from “ideal” dentistry taught in school 🦷personality profile — most dentists are self professed “type A”/perfectionists 🦷high levels of patient anxiety and being ill-equipped on how to manage it
🦷having to go into corporate type work environments after graduation (some of which are known as dental “mills” due to daily production goals)
🦷pressure to have your own practice and the additional DEBT that goes along with it 🦷isolation and confinement because MOST dentists practice solo
🦷physical demands of our profession
🦷stress of learning the business side of dentistry along with keeping up your skills of practicing dentistry 🦷learning how to manage a staff and dealing with the stress of employment issues
🦷pressures and desires of having: a nice 🏡, nice 🚘, nice 👜 etc. etc.
🦷trying to balance the other hats you may be wearing (mom, wife, etc.); my story really started when I purchased my practice, was pregnant a month later, worked full time, then took non-paid maternity leave, came back to work (my son and nanny tagged along for 18 months) and also pumped 4x/day! .
But of course, being the eternal optimist that I am, I end this with saying that there are ways to come out of it alive (and happy). Stayed tuned for part 2! I’d love to hear — what are your work stresses and how do you cope?