Oral Surgeons


Oral Surgeons


Dentists care for clients’ teeth through such preventive and reparative practices as filling, cleaning, extracting, or replacing teeth. Oral surgeons are specialized dentists who perform intricate surgeries on the jaws, teeth, lips, gums, neck, and head. They are more precisely known as oral and maxillofacial surgeons. “Oral” refers to the mouth, and “maxillofacial” refers to the face and jaws. There are approximately 5,900 oral and maxillofacial surgeons in the United States.

Quick Facts


Median Salary



Employment Prospects



Minimum Education Level

Medical Degree



Completion of dental school and a postgraduate residency in oral



Mechanical/Manual Dexterity


Personality Traits

Hands On


Oral and maxillofacial surgeons rank amongst the highest-paid workers in the United States. They earned mean annual wages of $237,570 in May 2018, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Ten percent earned less than $65,360. PayScale.com reports that the highest-paid oral and maxillofacial surgeons earned $397,000 in 2020.

Oral and maxillofacial surgeons who are salaried employees rec...

Work Environment

Oral and maxillofacial surgeons spend most of their time in a dental office with an outpatient surgery suite. Some work in hospitals in order to perform more complicated operations. They are helped by dental assistants, surgical technologists, and other dental professionals.

The career of oral and maxillofacial surgeon was selected as the ninth-best job in the United States in 2020 by


Employment for oral and maxillofacial surgeons is expected to grow by 7 percent from 2018 to 2028, according to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). This is faster than the average for all careers. The DOL says that “there will be increased demand for complicated dental work, including dental implants and bridges. The risk of oral cancer increases significantly with age, and complications can re...