Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Q+A with Dr. David Magid, Penn D’98

It’s always fun to talk with current dentists. I realize that everything we are learning is to help our patients out there one day… you know, when we graduate from dental school. Dr. David Magid- Penn D’98- answered a few questions about his dental career & even gave some advice for current dental students. As someone who’s not sure about specializing (should I? what field?), this was wonderfully insightful.

How did you decide to become a general dentist?

I decided to become a general dentist because there are more things to do as a general dentist. I wouldn’t get bored of doing the same kinds of things over and over again. I also wanted to start working immediately. Loans were a big issue for me and I would have needed to take out another 100k. I was ready to be in the working world after graduating.

What area of general dentistry do you enjoy the most?

I really like doing cosmetic dentistry. Some of the cosmetic cases I do involve straightening people’s teeth using short term braces and invisalign. It is great when someone doesn’t want to be in braces for 2+ years and you can fix their teeth in a fraction of that time. Using veneers, I can often fine tune those results to make them even better.

Cosmetic Dentistry

I also enjoy doing immediate bonding for patients who come in with a broken tooth, giving immediate satisfaction especially if they have a wedding or big meeting the next day.

I truly enjoy the relationships that I build with my patients. It’s not just a single appointment; it’s a life-long relationship that I’m building.

What about practicing dentistry that you find the most challenging?

One thing that I have found most challenging is starting your own practice. I wish dental school would prepare you more for the business side of dentistry, which is equally as important as the clinical side. Dentistry is such an exacting and challenging profession by itself and satisfying your patients is important. But getting to understand the business side of dentistry- and understanding how to start a practice- would be really helpful in alleviating stress on the doctor.

Keeping up with all the technology of dentistry can also be challenging. Technology is always changing and you need to keep up it all-- as well as staying abreast of your continuing education and filling out all the forms and memberships you need to be on your A game every day.

What advice do you wish you were given as a dental student?

To use the dental school and the teachers and faculty and everyone there to the fullest. Ask as many questions as possible. Try to shadow your clinical professors to learn as much as you can. Once you are out of dental school you don’t have as many resources at your fingertips. Look at dental school as a short window of time in your career. Even though it is very difficult and not an easy process there is a light at the end of the tunnel, you will be rewarded with a wonderful career after much hard work.

Dr Magid

Lastly, I would advise current students to befriend a dentist while they are in school. This will help you see what real life dentistry is all about. Sometimes the things you do in school are intimidating and you don’t like them or you don’t see the point in learning them. If you talk to a dentist you could see real life applications and how useful those will be when you are a dentist one day.

Dr. David Magid of Livingston Smile Design grew up in South Florida and received his DMD from University of Pennsylvania. He also completed a dental residency at Columbia University School of Dental and Oral Surgery. David also loves to cook and is a real foodie. He recently took his wife to Zaatar restaurant in Philly and says it was one of the best restaurants they’d ever been to!


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