Whether you are an experienced dentist or about to start your career, you need more than just a well-crafted resume to land your dream job. Though often overlooked, your dentist cover letter can be just as powerful a tool to showcase your expertise and ensure you stand out from other applicants.
Writing a cover letter may seem like a waste of time compared to all the other things you can do with your skills and knowledge. However, it would be a pity not to use its power to grab the attention of potential employers and open the door to new career possibilities.
Plus, once you read our detailed guide on how to write a perfect dentist cover letter, you’ll be able to craft it all by yourself quickly and efficiently.
Your dentist cover letter should be one page long, containing 3 to 5 paragraphs and 250 to 400 words.
Add contact details to the header of your cover letter, and remember to include a formal greeting and closing.
When talking about your skills and achievements, focus on those that are most relevant to the position you are applying for.
To ensure you’ve got the hiring manager's attention, write a catchy first paragraph and include a call to action in the last one.
What is the Ideal Format to Use for a Dentist Cover Letter?
You may have a perfect skill set and an irresistible personality, but if the format and structure of your cover letter aren’t appropriate, potential employers may dismiss your application before even giving you a fair chance.
That’s because the first step of elimination starts with skimming the applications, and clean and professional documents ensure you are not eliminated at this early stage.
So, the first thing you should know about formatting your cover letter is to keep it one page long at most. Ideally, 250–400 words should be split into 3–5 paragraphs.
Here are some essential cover letter layout guidelines to keep in mind:
Cover Letter Guidelines
Use a clean and professional font (e.g., Arial, Times New Roman, or Helvetica) in size between 10–12pts.
Set margins to 1 inch on all sides.
Use left alignment for the text and ensure the letter is single-spaced with additional white space between different sections and paragraphs.
As for the structure of your cover letter, no matter whether you are writing an entry-level dentist cover letter or an application letter for a government dentist, its content should be organized this way:
Cover Letter Format
The recipient’s contact information goes in the header.
A formal salutation is used for letter opening.
The first paragraph has to be attention-grabbing.
The body of the letter should be split into several paragraphs.
Call to action should wrap up the letter effectively.
A formal ending phrase closes the letter.
Additionally, if you want to share a particularly catchy detail about yourself, you can include it by adding a postscript.
Dentist Cover Letter Overview
Now that you understand the basics of what a dentist cover letter should look like, we can go into more detail regarding its content.
Note that the guiding principles of writing a cover letter remain unchanged, regardless of whether you are a seasoned professional or are writing a dentist cover letter with no experience.
Before we continue, have a look at a visual cover letter example to get the hang of what your dentist letter for work should look like:
Now, let’s go over each individual section:
The heading of your dentist cover letter is where you include your and your recipient’s contact information—name, title, phone number, and email address. It should also contain the date of writing.
Ideally, you will address the letter to the recruiter’s or hiring manager’s name instead of using their titles. This way, you personalize your cover letter and build a rapport from the get-go. Of course, if you can’t find the recipient's name, it is okay to use the title only.
Let’s see that in an example:
Cover Letter Heading Example
Roger Bush General Dentist 1829 Clifford Street Berkeley, CA 94705 620-778-1876 firstname.lastname@example.org
Selena Ramirez Hiring Manager Columbus Hospital 110 Shult Dr Columbus, TX 28902
The greeting of your cover letter should be straightforward and formal; there’s no reason nor room to get creative here. Start with a simple “Dear” followed by the name of the recipient.
In case you can’t get a hold of the recipient’s name, use their title and stay away from generic phrases like “To whom it may concern.”
It may not be fair, but the truth is that many hiring managers don’t read every cover letter that they receive. In most cases, they’ll quickly skim the letters and read only those that grab their attention instantly. That’s why it is essential that you write an impactful introduction paragraph to ensure your letter doesn’t end up in the wrong pile.
To achieve this, think of your first paragraph as an elevator pitch.
Start strong with a few of your most relevant skills and achievements in a couple of effective sentences to give the recipient an instant impression of what you can do.
Let’s check out a good example of this:
Cover Letter Introduction Example
I am writing to express my keen interest in the General Dentist position at Columbus Hospital, as advertised on your website. With a rich experience of 7 years in different areas of dentistry and a dedication to providing the best possible care to my patients, I am confident that I am an excellent fit for this role.
#4. Skills, Qualifications, & Experiences
The body of your dentist cover letter should support your claim in the introduction by elaborating on what makes you a great fit.
Therefore, this part should feature the most information, as it is your main selling point. So, expand your skills and achievements in one to three paragraphs and showcase your competence for the role.
Let’s see that in an example:
Cover Letter Body Example
My academic and clinical training provided me with a strong basis and experience in treating patients, performing dental screenings, and proposing diagnoses and treatment plans. As a general dentist at the Chicago Community Hospital, I have had the opportunity to expand my skills in triaging patients, performing dental and oral cancer screenings, and using the most advanced dental techniques and equipment.
In addition to my accomplishments, I have also developed an extensive skill set that allows me to provide first-class patient care, such as:
Strong interpersonal communication skills, effective decision-making, and problem-solving abilities that allow me to react promptly in emergencies.
Proficiency in developing individual treatment plans and advanced diagnostics in complicated cases.
#5. Reasons for Applying
Whether you are employed or unemployed, an experienced professional, or a recent graduate, hiring managers will always want to know your reasons for applying. The best way to explain what motivated you to apply is to show how your skills and experience perfectly match their requirements.
The key here is to highlight your most relevant assets and expand on how the organization you’re applying for supports your professional development. So, read the job description thoroughly and target the exact requirements to ensure the potential employer sees you as a highly motivated professional.
Here’s an example of how to do this:
Reasons for Applying Example
While working at the community hospital, I had the chance to practice innovative treatment techniques with a 99.9% success rate. Since Columbus Hospital has a long-standing reputation for pioneering the most advanced dental procedures, I see this position as a perfect opportunity to continue my professional development.
#6. Call to Action
Once you’ve elaborated on how and why you are a perfect fit for the role, the next step is incentivizing the hiring manager to contact you. To do that, you need a strong call to action in the final paragraph of your dentist cover letter to wrap it up with style.
Here’s a good example:
Cover Letter CTA Example
Thank you for taking the time to consider my application. I would welcome the opportunity to elaborate on how my skills and professional goals align with Columbus Hospital’s requirements.
#7. Conclusion & Sign Off
The closing of your dentist cover letter should be neat and formal, just like its beginning.
There are several phrases to use for this purpose, with some of the most popular being:
Popular Cover Letter Sign Offs
Choose any of the phrases that match your personal style best, and finish the letter by putting your name right underneath.
Here’s an example:
Cover Letter Sign Off Example
Sincerely, Roger Bush
Dentist Cover Letter Example
So, let’s see what it looks like when we put all these guidelines into practice.
Here’s a complete dentist cover letter example:
Top 5 Best Strategies for Writing a Dentist Cover Letter
Here are a few more professional tips to help you wrap up your dentist cover letter in the best way:
Dentist Cover Letter Writing Tips
Include soft skills. A dentist’s job implies a high level of professional knowledge, which is why most of the candidates focus on highlighting their specific hard skills. However, since, as a dentist, you are working with people, highlighting your communication or team-building skills may be what sets you apart from other applicants.
Send your cover letter in PDF file format. This is the best way to submit both your resume and cover letter because PDF is a versatile file format that can be viewed on any device without changing its layout.
Proofread your cover letter. Though a few typos say nothing about your professional expertise, they may give off the impression that you are sloppy or don’t care much about your application.
Browse different types of dentist cover letters. If writing isn’t your thing, you can get inspired by exploring different types of sample letters of intent for dentists, from dentist cover letter samples for new graduates to those for seasoned professionals.
Additional tip: Add a postscript. If there’s any detail about your experience or education relevant to the position that you haven’t found a place to include elsewhere, add it to the postscript.
This is a great way to grab the hiring manager’s attention, as most people read the postscript even when they skip the rest of the letter entirely. A postscript may be just the detail to inspire the hiring manager to circle back and read the rest of your dentist cover letter.
Even if you don’t consider yourself much of a writer, there’s no need to avoid writing your dentist cover letter; we’ve covered everything in this article to make writing easy for you.
Just focus on your qualities and your genuine motivation, and use your cover letter as an opportunity to leave a lasting impression on your potential employers.
After all, you’ve already done the hardest part—you’ve earned your dentist degree and gotten some experience; now you just have to show what you’re made of!
Good luck in your job hunt!