Breaking out to impact dental health on a global scale Dentistry

You have a passion for perfecting smiles. An appreciation for dentistry as an art and a science. Now put your skills to work in a broader role as a global ambassador of goodwill. Serving part-time as a Dental Officer and Reservist in America’s Navy, you will undergo training, experiences and challenges that extend far beyond the scope of a civilian dental practice.

Job Description

The only thing better than running your own successful dental practice is the ability to do so while making the world a better place. Whether you’re an established dentist or just starting out, serving as a Navy Dentist in the Reserve will allow you to do work that leaves a lasting impression.

Imagine practicing outside the norm of everyday dentistry. A weekend performing checkups and extractions for Sailors, Marines and their families. Or an afternoon spent relieving chronic pain for thankful village elders. Whether close to your home, or aboard the most sophisticated hospital ship on the planet.

This is not your typical dental office or waiting room. It is an encounter with Navy Dentistry – and here, procedures performed can be more impactful than you ever imagined.

Whatever the specifics, your duties will be carried out during your scheduled drilling and training periods. Take a moment to learn more about the general roles and responsibilities of Reservists. And know this: The impact of your work and your service will go far beyond the time that you put in.

Specific Responsibilities

In the Navy Dental Corps, you’ll work with the latest tools and technologies. At cutting-edge facilities stateside and abroad, merging the best aspects of civilian and military dentistry to gain expertise and versatility that are unmatched.

Primarily, you’ll look after the dental needs of the brave men and women who serve our country, their families and other beneficiaries who have served. You may also fill in for deployed Active Duty Navy Dentists, working mainly at locations that are typically close to your home.

You will provide the best dental care available for Sailors, Marines, servicemembers and their families, doing everything a typical dentist does:

  • Perform checkups
  • Fill cavities
  • Offer preventive care
  • Render aid in response to global disasters and outreach programs
  • Utilize advanced technology

Dental Specialties

Always at the forefront, Navy Dentistry offers opportunities in any of 14 specialty areas, in addition to general dentistry.

  • Comprehensive Dentistry
  • Endodontics
  • Maxillofacial Prosthodontics
  • Operative Dentistry
  • Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology
  • Oral Facial Pain Clinic
  • Oral Pathology
  • Oral Surgery
  • Orthodontics
  • Pediatrics
  • Periodontics
  • Prosthodontics
  • Public Health*
  • Research*

*You must be a general practitioner/dentist first, then you can apply/be selected for these specialties.

Regardless of your focus, this is an opportunity to perform truly innovative work. Pioneering advancements in emergency treatment. Utilizing digital radiography. Moving dentistry forward through the application of high-resolution dental telescopes and high-tech mobile capabilities.

Financial Offers


As a Reservist in the Navy Dental Corps, you’ll receive a first-rate benefits package – including your choice of any one of these three generous financial offers:*

  1. Up to $75,000 in specialty pay
  2. Up to $50,000 in dental school loan repayment assistance
  3. An immediate one-time sign-on bonus of up to $10,000

*Offers cannot be combined and depend on specialty. Sign-on bonus offer option available only to those with prior Navy experience (NAVET).


If you join the Reserve in the Navy Dental Corps as a resident, you can get:

  • A monthly stipend of $2,179 while completing your residency program
  • Up to $50,000 in dental school loan repayment assistance

Note: Offers based on service commitment. Contact a Navy Reserve Medical Officer Recruiter for complete offer details.


Most of what you do in the Navy Reserve is considered training. The basic Navy Reserve commitment involves training a minimum of one weekend a month (referred to as drilling) and two weeks a year (referred to as Annual Training) – or the equivalent of that.

Dentists in the Navy Reserve serve in an Officer role. Before receiving the ongoing professional training that comes with this job, initial training requirements must first be met.

For current or former Navy Officers (NAVET): Prior experience satisfies the initial leadership training requirement – so you will not need to go through Officer Training again.

For current or former Officers of military branches other than the Navy (OSVET), as well as for Officer candidates without prior military experience: You will need to meet the initial leadership training requirement by attending the twelve-day Direct Commission Officer School (DCO) in Newport, RI. This will count as your first Annual Training.

With flexible training options, Navy Reserve Dental Officers can comfortably balance civilian and military schedules. You can maintain your own life and your own practice – enriching both with the rewarding work you do for others.

The Navy Dental Corps offers you a truly diverse variety of academic, clinical and operational settings in which to practice. In some cases, you can even work in the same civilian setting you work in now. What’s more, you will enjoy an unrivaled sense of pride and fulfillment known only to those who serve.

Career Advantages

In the Navy Dental Corps, your exceptional experience as a dental professional can offer outstanding career advancement opportunities that can pay off in your civilian career. Beyond your affiliation with a world-class health-care network, you will take seasoned expertise, unmatched versatility and proven management skills into your own work. Making you stand out more – and putting you in high demand as a practicing dentist.

And the more tangible benefits? Competitive pay. Points earned toward retirement benefits. Outstanding insurance options. And much more. Read more about the benefits of serving in the Navy Reserve.


General qualifications may vary depending upon whether you’re currently serving, whether you’ve served before or whether you’ve never served before.

Citizenship – Applicants must be a U.S. citizen or foreign citizen currently practicing in the U.S. (see a Navy Reserve Medical Officer Recruiter for details).

Education – Candidates must be a graduate of a dental school approved by the American Dental Association.

Licensing – All applicants must be currently licensed to practice dentistry independently in any of the United States, Puerto Rico or the District of Columbia.

Age – Applicants should be at least 18 and no older than 47 years of age at the time of appointment. Maximum age limits may be waived on a case-by-case basis, depending on qualifications and the needs of the Navy Reserve.

More Information

Want to explore further? Learn what you need to know about joining the Navy Reserve. Find us on Facebook to interact with actual Navy Health-care professionals. Or, if you need more information, contact a Navy Reserve Recruiter.

Consider Your Service Options.

There are different ways that you can commit to serve in America’s Navy. Besides part-time opportunities in the Navy Reserve, full-time Active Duty positions are also available in this career area.