High job satisfaction among orthodontic therapists: A UK workforce survey

O. Onabolu, F. McDonald, J. E. Gallagher*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Background Orthodontic therapy is a new professional group within dentistry, about which little is known. This study aimed to conduct a population survey to examine the profile, working practices, motivation, experiences, career expectations and level of job satisfaction of orthodontic therapists in the UK. Methods Postal questionnaires were sent to all 417 GDC registered orthodontic therapists in the UK. The self-Administered GMI questionnaire comprised questions on demography, motivation, job satisfaction and career aspirations. Univariate and multivariate analyses of the data were undertaken including exploratory factor analysis using SPSS statistical software (version 23 for Windows). Results A response of 48% (N = 200) was achieved; the majority of whom were female (95%), working in a mixed NHS/private practice (73.2%), in England (76.8%) and many had wider qualifications in dentistry, notably dental nursing (56.6%). Their mean age was 39 years. The five factors which made up 52% of the variability contained in the initial 23 motivating factors were: 'professional job', 'practical experience', 'knowledge and skills', 'healthcare and people' and 'business'. Reported levels of job satisfaction were high and the majority were routinely providing treatment on prescription. Conclusions Orthodontic therapists, a new professional group within dentistry, report high levels of job satisfaction and there is evidence that this role represents a career development option within dentistry for dental nurses in particular. This national study provides an insight into their working patterns and motivation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-245
Number of pages9
JournalBritish Dental Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 23 Feb 2018


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