The expected job outlook for orthodontists is a growth of 16 percent from 2012 to 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This positive outlook is attributed to the dental needs of the aging baby-boomer generation and the fact that individuals are expected to keep their teeth longer.
Orthodontists expect faster than average job growth because more research is being done that links oral health to overall health. Dental practitioners may also see more patients and reduce overall appointment times thanks to advancing medical technology. Advanced medical technology is expected to increase the rate of cosmetic dental services for patients, which means more business for orthodontists.
Another factor contributing to positive job growth for orthodontists is the increase in access to health care, which means that individuals are more likely to visit the orthodontist, as well as other doctors. The need for orthodontists and other dental practitioners is not expected to keep pace with the country's need for dental services. Thus, some patients might seek an orthodontist for dental care but might be unable to find an available doctor. The job outlook is also affected by retiring orthodontists and the need for new practitioners to take over vacant positions.