National Occupational Classification (NOC) 2021 Version 1.0


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31110 - Dentists

Dentists diagnose, treat, prevent and control disorders of the teeth and mouth. They work in private practice or may be employed in hospitals, clinics, public health facilities or universities.

  • Illustrative example(s)

    • dentist
    • endodontist
    • oral and maxillofacial surgeon
    • oral pathologist
    • oral radiologist
    • orthodontist
    • pediatric dentist
    • periodontist
    • prosthodontist
    • public health dentist

    All examples

  • Exclusion(s)

    • Dental assistants and dental laboratory assistants (See 33100 Dental assistants and dental laboratory assistants)
    • Dental hygienists and dental therapists (See 32111 Dental hygienists and dental therapists)
    • Dental technologists and technicians (See 32112 Dental technologists and technicians)
    • Denturists (See 32110 Denturists)
  • Main duties

    This group performs some or all of the following duties:


    • Examine patients' teeth, gums and surrounding tissue to diagnose disease, injury and decay and plan appropriate preventative or corrective treatment
    • Provide general dental care such as cleaning teeth, filling cavities, performing root canals, applying veneers, and fitting crowns, bridges and dentures
    • Restore, extract and replace diseased and decayed teeth
    • Instruct patients on oral hygiene and preventive dental care
    • Monitor patient progress to identify changes or the progression of dental disease
    • Prescribe antibiotics or other medication as required
    • Bleach, clean, or polish teeth to restore natural color
    • Supervise dental hygienists, dental assistants and other staff
    • Refer patients to dental specialists as needed for recommended procedures
    • May provide basic orthodontic treatments with additional training.

    Oral and maxillofacial surgeons

    • Collaborate with other professionals, such as restorative dentists and orthodontists, to plan treatment
    • Administer general and local anesthetics
    • Perform surgery to prepare the mouth for dental implants or to aid in the regeneration of deficient bone and gum tissues
    • Remove impacted, damaged, and non-restorable teeth, as well as tumors and other abnormal growths of the oral and facial regions
    • Perform surgery on the mouth and jaws to treat conditions, such as cleft lip, palate, and jaw growth problems
    • Provide emergency treatment of facial injuries including facial lacerations, intra-oral lacerations, and fractured facial bones
    • Treat infections of the oral cavity, salivary glands, jaws, and neck.


    • Examine patients' teeth, gums and surrounding tissue to assess abnormalities of jaw development, tooth position, and other dental-facial structures
    • Diagnose teeth and jaw or other dental-facial abnormalities
    • Propose treatment plan for conditions such as underbites, overbites, crowding and others
    • Design and fabricate appliances, such as space maintainers, retainers, and labial and lingual arch wires
    • Fit dental appliances in patients' mouths to alter the position and relationship of teeth and jaws or to realign teeth
    • Coordinate orthodontic services with other dental and medical professionals
    • Educate patients about improving and maintaining orthodontic care, and promoting routine dental health care.


    • Examine patient's teeth, gums and jaws to diagnose disease, injury and decay, and plan appropriate treatment to enhance patients' dental and facial aesthetics, or correct orofacial problems
    • Replace missing teeth and associated oral structures with permanent fixtures, such as implant-supported prostheses, crowns and bridges, or removable fixtures, such as dentures
    • Restore function and improve aesthetics for traumatic injury victims, or individuals with diseases or birth defects
    • Design and fabricate dental prostheses, or supervise dental technicians who construct the devices
    • Fit prostheses to patients, making any necessary adjustments and modifications
    • Restore damaged teeth with materials such as fillings, veneers and crowns
    • Collaborate with general dentists, dental specialists, and other health professionals to develop solutions to dental and oral health concerns.
  • Employment requirements


    • Two to four years of pre-dentistry university studies or, in Quebec, completion of a college program in sciences and a university degree from a recognized dental program are required.
    • Licensing by a provincial or territorial regulatory body is required.
    • Dentists in general practice can move into a specialized practice through advanced training.

    Oral and maxillofacial surgeons

    • Four to seven years of specialty residency training in oral and maxillofacial surgery are required.


    • Three years advanced orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics program accredited by the Canadian Dental Association is required.


    • Three years advanced prosthodontics program accredited by the Canadian Dental Association is required.
  • Additional information

    • Certification by the National Dental Examining Board of Canada entitles dentists or graduates of approved dental programs to practice dentistry in any province in Canada provided requirements set out by the provincial and territorial licensing authorities are met.
    • Dentists with further education, training and licensing, can specialize and practice in such areas as oral and maxillofacial surgery, orthodontics, pediatric dentistry, periodontics, endodontics, prosthodontics, oral pathology, oral radiology or public health dentistry.
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