California Endodontics Careers

Endodontists diagnose, treat, and study diseases associated with the pulp and roots of the teeth. They perform dozens of root canals each week, which is why many people associate these specialists with this procedure only. The truth is, endodontists perform many other procedures such as apicoectomies, intentional replantation, implantation, removing one or two roots, repairing an injured root, and more.

Endodontists may have their own practices or work in a group practice, or they might work at a hospitals, clinic, and other facility. While endodontists have a presence in all states across the U.S., the highest population resides in the State of California.

Endodontics Education and Training Programs

Aspiring endodontists must complete 2 to 3 years of education and training in endodontic treatment beyond the Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS), Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD), Master of Science in  Dentistry (MSD), or other dental degree.  In general, both programs must be approved by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) of the American Dental Association (ADA).

Course titles for endodontic training programs may vary by school, but a typical program requires successful completion of courses such as Principles of Endodontics, Endodontic Treatment, Biomedical Research, Radiology, Microsurgery Technique, Moderate Sedation, Implant Dentistry, Diagnosis and Treatment Planning in Implant Dentistry, Practice Management, and Professional Ethics.

Tuition for endodontics training programs varies by school and residency status. It is important to note that tuition rates do not include instruments and other equipment. These costs can total $35,000 or more for the entire program in addition to up to $40,000 or more for tuition. Fees, housing, meals, transportation, etc., are not included.

In addition to the requirements outlined above, in general, dentists specializing in endodontics must hold a dental license, a specialty license, and American Association of Endodontists (AAE) certification.

Endodontics Schools and Training Programs in California

The American Association of Endodontists (AAE) lists six CODA accredited specialty programs in endodontics. They include:

Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA
University of California-Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA
University of California-San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
University of the Pacific, San Francisco, CA
Veteran Affairs Healthcare System-Long Beach, Long Beach, CA

Based on AAE listings by state, California and New York are home to the highest number of dental schools that offer endodontics  programs. Pennsylvania and Texas offer the second highest number at four schools each.

Employment and Earnings Outlook for California Endodontists

Endodontists are part of the broader "Dentists, All Other Specialists" group. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that this group consists of 5,150 specialists nationwide averaging $164,780 per year, up from 4,770 specialists averaging $142,070 per year in 2008.

The State of California is home to 740 specialists averaging $148,910 per year, up from 330 specialists averaging $169,110 per year in 2008. The Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario Metro area was the second highest paying Metro area for dentists specializing in a specific area in 2008, with an average salary of $208,470 per year.  At the time, the Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale Metro area was the fourth highest paying metro area with an average salary of $200,260 per year.

Today, the State of California has the highest employment level for this occupation followed by Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, and Oregon. The San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos Metro area has the second highest employment level for specialists, and the
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale Metro area has the eighth.

The San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos Metro area also has the fourth highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in this occupation and the Sacramento--Arden-Arcade--Roseville Metro area is the eighth highest paying metro area for specialists, with an average annual salary of $217,290.