What is Dental Studies like?

Since the last 4 or 5 years of my life I have constantlly faced the question that What do I want to do or become in my life. And when you want to sincerely make a choice scientifically, i.e. know what all fields you can get into, how is work and life in these fields, what do you want from life etc., but if you have no idea about the experience of being in a profession and you need to make these decisions in time, it may get very annoying. I have been in this situation for a very long time. So I wish to do my little bit to contribute to a solution for the upcoming students. So here is a blog where I talk about what is it to be a Dental student, what are we taught, what do different subjects mean etc.

If you are already in this field you may find this information very simple and maybe of no use to you; but it is meant to guide younger students about the field and ya I would love to get your inputs and experiences!

Everything that I will be writing here is about how it is in My University. Some things may change for different Universities.

Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) is a 4 and half year professional undergraduate degree program to qualify as a dental surgeon in India. ( teeth, jaw, gums, oral cavity)

They Say that a DENTIST is a

Doctor + ENgineer + artIST !

So let’s see how Dentists are Made.


Here is a list of Subjects that are taught each year.

1st Year:


Physiology + Biochemistry

Dental Anatomy Dental Histology

Dental Material and Prosthodontics

2nd year:


Dental Material and Prosthetics

Pathology +Microbiology

Conservative Dentistry and Endodontics.

3rd year:

General Medicine

General Surgery

Oral Pathology

Conservative Dentistry and Endodontics

4th year:

Oral Medicine and Radiology

Paediatric and Preventive Dentistry

Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopaedics


Prosthodontics and Crown and Bridge

Conservative dentistry and Endodontics

Oral and Maxillofacial surgery

Public Health Dentistry

(UNDERLINED Subjects have their exams in that Year. That as, other subjects are taught for 2 or more years and their exams are taken after that..)

Now following is my experience for the 1st year Subjects. (Obviously, I cannot say about other years.. because I am a 1st year student.)


Anatomy is study of the Structure of body and it’s parts. Anatomy in Dentistry is more Focused on Head and Neck region. We are taught about Thorax and Abdomen and briefly about Limbs too but Head and Neck is in much more detail.

Here we are taught:

BONES : Their anatomical position, their relations with other bones, Muscles attached to them, Joints, Features on them( like Foramen, Fossa, Pits, Tubercles, Elevations), their Ossification, Blood and Nerve supply, Clinical Anatomy, X-Rays of bones, etc.

SOFT PARTS: Various Organs like Heart, Lungs, Liver, Kidneys, Stomach, Pancreas, Intestines, Brain(🀩!) Are Shown (sometimes in numerous sections) and Taught! We learn about their Parts and Structures and Relations, Location, Blood and Nerve Supply, Clinical Anatomy etc.

ARTERIES, VEINS and Nerves: Some of these, especially important ones for Head and Neck are Taught in detail. Their course, Parts, Branches, Organs Supplied, etc.

EMBRYOLOGY: Gametogenesis, Development of Embryo, Development of Face, Head and Neck etc

HISTOLOGY: Cell structure and layers of various Organs are taught and shown in Microscope.

This is Circumvallate Papillae under Microscope!


Physiology is about How various processes occur in our body to maintain Homeostasis. Through the Praticals of Physiology one learns how to read a blood report, measure Pulse and Blood Pressure(!), observe and count cells under Microscope ( and yes, how to Set a Microscope πŸ˜…), Bleeding time and Clotting time etc.

Physiology will teach many interesting facts about the Body that will make you feel like a doctorπŸ˜„ ( I used to teach many interesting lessons to My Dad also.. like ‘you know why this happens this way?’ And would lecture him for half an hour; Also most topics on My Blog until now are based on Physiology) This means it is Interesting but Demands effort in remembering Steps of various processes; Regulations; Names and Ranges of Amount of various substances etc


Biochemistry is all about Metabolism of various substances (Cycles), Nutrients, Recommend Dietary Allowance, Sources, Deficiencies; Tests for Various substances in Milk, Blood, Urine and Saliva etc.


Dental Anatomy is about Structure of each Teeth: Number of Cusps, Roots, Pits, Grooves, Tubercles etc of a teeth; How to Identify each tooth and differentiate it from other tooth, is taught. We have to CARVE teeth from Wax blocks(πŸ˜…) to understand and remember these features better.

Dental Histology is about Structures of oral cavity like Enamel, Dentin, Cementum, Pulp, Periodontal Ligament, Alveolar Bone, Oral Mucous Membrane, Salivary Glands, TMJ etc and Development of Teeth and these Structures.

Each of these is a Separate Chapter of Dental Histology. Their Physical and Chemical Compositions, Parts, Functions, Clinical Considerations, age changes and much more are taught.


This subject teaches various materials and their Properties and Uses in Dentistry. How to Manipulate Materials like Plasters, Impression Compound, Shellac, Waxes, Acrylic Resin, Greenn Stick, ZOE paste etc is taught in first year. We learn about various Clinical and Laboratory Steps of Making a Denture here.

The Labwork here is Quiet interesting while the Theory deals with Amounts and Composition of various materials(πŸ˜“).

Prosthodontics deals with application of knowledge of Dental Materials to build(design) dentures and other artificial replacements for oral Structures.

This is just Before preparation of the Master Cast; after Beading and Boxing.


Dentistry is more about Practical ability to Handle and Treat a Patient than just Theoritical knowledge.

The hands on practice on Patients starts with 3rd year of BDS.

But overall Personality Building, as a Doctor, starts from the Very First Day. We wear Formal Clothes like Kurti to College. This is to bring that sense of Professionalism in students. In the Labs we wear the APRON. The importance of Apron and the Importance of a Clean Apron are explained.

How to Talk to Patients and Respect them, Passify them etc.are some of the essential (Psychological) skills that a Dental Student should learn.

And Yes, there are Other Co-Curricular Activities taking place in a Dental College too!

Picture of KhoKho match during Sports Week in my College..

So, this is my experience so far with Dentistry! I would love to know your views!

Did you find the blog Helpful?! If yes, please feel free to share it πŸ˜„ with someone who is in the phase of life where he or she has to make a Career Choice.


18 thoughts on “What is Dental Studies like?”

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