WHAT IS AN OVERSEAS DENTAL INTERNSHIP WITH WORK THE WORLD?
A dental internship abroad is a placement undertaken in a low-resource hospital in the developing world.
The healthcare system will seem a complete contrast to your own, and you’ll get experience with both practices and conditions you’re unlikely to have encountered.
You choose which destination you want to go to and which areas you want to experience, from maxillofacial surgery to general oral hygiene. It’s completely customizable.
You’ll see cases of decay advanced well beyond what you’ve seen before. You’ll learn how sociocultural issues impact patients (oral hygiene is often a secondary concern in our destinations). And you’ll see how local specialists adapt to the challenge of equipment shortages.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF A DENTAL INTERNSHIP ABROAD?
To help you (and your resumé) stand apart from the many dental students graduating every year, we’ve specially designed our internships.
On our internships for dental students, you’ll:
- Expand your clinical knowledge and skill set
- Develop your confidence and resourcefulness
- Build your personal and professional network
- Sharpen your verbal and non-verbal communication
- Become more attractive to employers
The best part? Placements run Monday to Friday. Evenings and weekends are yours to adventure across a beautiful destination you might never visit again.
Who are we?
We're Work the World — The experts in planning and building dental internships for international students. We’ve been doing this since 2005, and have built internships for over 15,000 students from more than 400 universities around the world.
We provide a personal, end-to-end service that includes:
Internship customization (choose your destination and areas of clinical interest) | Comprehensive pre-trip support | 24/7 in-country support team | Private, catered accommodation
You’ll arrive on a Sunday and we operate 52 weeks a year, so if you're looking for either term-time or summer internships, we can help. Internship durations start from one week.
For more detail about how our service works click here.
WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS?
As long as you are enrolled or have been accepted on a professional dentistry degree at dental school you are eligible.
You can also travel if you are already graduated. However, please note that our placements are educational in their nature and designed to give you experience in a low resource hospital setting under the supervision of local qualified professionals.
STEP 1. SUBMIT AN INQUIRY
First, submit an inquiry using the form at the bottom of the page. Tell us where, when and why you want to travel as well as your current level of study.
STEP 2. WE'LL GET IN TOUCH
Next, a member of our consultation team will review your inquiry then call you to discuss your eligibility. They will also answer any questions you may have.
STEP 3. APPROVAL AND CONFIRMATION
Once we have confirmed your eligibility, you need to submit your application form and pay your registration fee. We will then confirm your placement and availability within 48 hours.
Indonesia - Yogyakarta
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Your first few hours next to the dental chair in Yogyakarta will be a crash-course on the state of dental health in Indonesia. It will be clear from day one that education around oral care at home (that and promoting limited-sugar diets) haven’t been a priority here. Patients tend to only seek treatment when there is pain, and because of this, preventative dentistry is less developed here than you’re used to in the USA. One major barrier to patients seeking care is the cost. Dental care is neither free nor subsidized in Indonesia, so the average salary wouldn’t cover tooth-saving procedures, let alone regular checkups.
Mexico - Merida
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Merida is the cultural capital of Mexico with striking colonial architecture, lush central plazas and bustling boulevards. In the evenings, the city transforms with restaurants and bars in full swing. Beyond the city, you’ll dive in beautiful underwater caves or ‘cenotes’, relax on tropical beaches, and visit breathtaking Mayan temples.
A significant number of people in Mexico exhibit signs of periodontal disease — a fact that reflects the limited access the population has to preventative treatments as standard. Procedures like restorations and fillings are of course performed here, but many patients present late, meaning many cases will prove more severe than you’ll be used to at home.
Peru - Arequipa
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Not only is Arequipa rich in history and culture, but it’s also surrounded by some of South America’s most beautiful landscapes. Trek through the Amazon, boat across floating villages, and visit the world famous Machu Picchu.
Unlike some of the other countries we work in, preventative dental care is more and more common in Peru. Some dental clinics have ultrasound cleaners and X-ray machines, but much of the equipment is outdated compared to what you use back home. You’ll see cases of severe decay, cavities and other advanced oral diseases owing to a high-sugar diet and a lack of education around oral hygiene. Treatment-wise, you’ll see things like fluoridation, prophylaxis, and endodontic and healing treatments too. If you want a dental internship in South America, Arequipa should be at the top of your list. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Arequipa.
Zambia - Lusaka
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Lusaka is the bustling capital city of Zambia. While here you can visit any number of the country’s 20 game parks and see rhino, lions, elephants and cheetah. You can even canoe along the shore of the great Zambezi river to watch hippos wading. Immersing yourself in the rich local cultures and traditions so ingrained in Zambian tribal culture is a highlight.
The only hospital in the city where patients can receive free or low-cost treatments is the one we’re partnered with. Most standard procedures are performed in the chairs here — restorations and fillings for example — but public information about oral hygiene is lacking. This means you’re more likely to see cases more severe than you’re used to at home. Observing maxillofacial surgeries is also possible here.
Nepal - Kathmandu
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Kathmandu is home to an ancient culture, ornate temples, and is surrounded by a natural beauty ripe for exploration. Here you can trek through jungles to hidden stupas, leap from the world’s highest bungee platform, and go on elephant safaris.
On a dental internship here you could get involved in everything from routine check-ups to abscess surgeries. Show enthusiasm and opportunities across Maxillofacial, Prosthodontics, and Endodontics could also appear. This is, simply put, one of the best dental internships in Asia. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Kathmandu.
Tanzania - Dar es Salaam
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While Dar es Salaam is Tanzania’s second largest city, it happens to be surrounded by game parks, mountains, forests, and warm seas. While here, be sure to go on safari, and stop by the tropical island of Zanzibar for sun, sand, sea, and the occasional beach barbecue.
Oral health issues are commonplace in Tanzania, due to contaminated water and a lack of oral health education. So, on a dental internship here you could be assisting specialists with a range of complex cases relating to oral surgery, pathology and general medicine. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Dar es Salaam.
Nepal - Pokhara
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Pokhara encircles an immense green lake, and has everything from ancient temples to reggae bars. At the feet of the Himalayan mountains you can go paragliding, bungee jumping, and whitewater rafting. Exploring winding market streets will show you another side of the city altogether.
While dental shadowing abroad in Pokhara, you could get insight into how specialists in low resource settings handle maxillofacial trauma, battle gum diseases, and repair cleft palates. You could also be spending time in Dental Radiology, diagnosing range of oral issues. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Pokhara.
Sri Lanka - Kandy
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Kandy’s ancient culture has left its mark on the city, with time-worn shrines and ornate Buddhist temples lining its streets. The city’s outskirts are also home to wildlife like elephants, jaguars, and leopards, making a jungle safari a must-do.
On your dental internship you could be assisting local specialists in busy departments, witnessing how the lack of resources impacts patient care here. You could also have the chance to see cases of oral cancer, the treatment of which will open your eyes to the developing nature of this field. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Kandy.
Ghana - Takoradi
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Takoradi offers a welcoming West African atmosphere to all. The town is a thriving port community with markets, bars, and restaurants aplenty. The area is also abundant in natural beauty — think safaris, hikes to jungle waterfalls, and trips remote village.
On a dental internship here, you could gain experience with oral conditions uncommon in the developed world. Spend time in the Pediatric Dentistry Department and you’ll come to understand the challenges faced by local professionals when treating conditions like pulpitis, gingivitis, and periodontitis. If you're interested in a dental internship in Africa, put Ghana on your list. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Takoradi.
"Part way through the treatment the power went out and the entire operatory plunged into complete darkness. I felt a little hand grab hold of my finger. It held on until the power came back!"
Ryan Teneycke, University of Saskatchewan 2019Read more
"For endodontics, due to the lack of resources, rubber dams and rotary instruments were not readily available."
Leo Sim, Queen's University, Belfast 2019Read more
"I got to watch lots of interesting cases such as a salivary gland stone removal"
Abbie Colley, Dundee University 2019Read more
"I learnt so much about dentistry, but I also left feeling inspired thanks to my housemates and staff."
Jenna Perkins, University of Kentucky 2019Read more
"I saw quite a few cases that I had only learned about in textbooks up until this placement."
Mohamad Abu Sharkh, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry 2018Read more
What is a dental internship?
A dental internship is a clinical rotation dental students can undertake in low-resource hospitals overseas. Every year, more and more dental students are doing their dentistry internships abroad. To create your own customized dental internship overseas, get in touch with us today.