Oral therapy helps keep teeth healthy

Course: Bachelor of oral health

Course: Bachelor of oral health

While dentists tend to get most of the glory for keeping our teeth in top shape, some of the credit should go to oral health therapists.

"These are practitioners registered by the Australian Dental Board. They work alongside dentists with a scope of practice that is focused on health maintenance, especially of the teeth and gums," says The University of Sydney's director of the bachelor of oral health and specialist in public health dentistry, Associate Professor Peter Dennison.

Oral health therapists can also take their skills beyond the clinic.

"They often work in the community to develop health promotion programs for groups such as the residents in nursing homes," Dennison says.

The course is popular with employers. However, those looking to move into roles as a dentist will find science, medical science and health sciences offer a better pathway to those careers.

Duration: Three years full-time or part-time equivalent.

Time: Expect to study 35 hours per week.

Where: Westmead Centre for Oral Health, Mons Road campus, Sydney.

When: Semester 1, 2014.

Link: sydney.edu.au/dentistry

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