The medical field offers many opportunities for those who are interested in pursuing a career in healthcare. For those who have already completed a four-year dental program, there are two paths they can take to become an oral surgeon. According to the list of surgical residencies approved by the American Dental Association Dental Accreditation Commission, dentists can apply for a surgical residency. To become a neurosurgeon, prospective dental and medical students must first earn a college degree.
A bachelor's degree program in pre-medical studies or one that focuses primarily on biology, physiology, anatomy, microbiology, chemistry, and mathematics can help prepare for dental school and surgical training. The answer to the question of whether a dentist can become a neurosurgeon is yes. There are even dual degree programs in dentistry and medicine. Dentists have a specific doctorate in dental surgery (DDS). Therefore, while certain dental school credits may transfer to medical school, depending on the program and the time the courses were taken, a dentist would have to follow the same general path as anyone else to become neurosurgeon. In order to make the transition from dentist to neurosurgeon, it is important to show interest in being a doctor.
The Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Program (OMFS) has a long history as one of the leading oral and maxillofacial surgery programs in the United States. The university where the dentist graduated determines what degree is awarded; however, they have the same weight. Although dentists do not specialize in oral surgery, they are trained in specific procedures that can be beneficial when transitioning into neurosurgery.