If you're interested in becoming a dentist, you'll need to complete a dental residency and it typically takes six to eight years. The exact timeline will depend on whether you choose to specialize in a certain area, such as oral surgery or periodontics. If you don't specialize, you may be able to shorten the time it takes by enrolling in a combined educational program. In general, it takes four years of college and four years of dental school to become a dentist.
However, if you decide to pursue a specialty, the timeline may be extended. Dentists play an important role in helping people avoid serious dental problems by diagnosing them early on and providing effective treatments.