Finally, you are licensed to practice dentistry. The next step now is to set up your own dental office. You say a silent prayer for your professors who have armed you with the information and training to practice your craft, your parents who have supported your schooling, and yourself for not giving up on a dream. Now it’s time for new goals, all revolving around the success of your practice.
This is when reality hits hard: you were trained to handle your patients’ dental issues and train them to care for their oral health, but you know very little about the business side of dentistry.
To succeed in dentistry, you must first know the business side of dentistry. The costs are anything but low, but there are ways to pay for them. Most practitioners agree that it takes about $500,000 or more to set up a modern dental office. Unless you already have that cash, you need help to manage it. Find a lender that will give you a fair deal; beware of businesses that will cost you an arm and a leg to pay back. Always read the fine print, especially when it comes to interests. Your bank is a good place to start. Your parents and other family members may also agree to chip in. There are also practice loans today now. Don’t forget about your insurance.
The equipment & supplies
Of course, these are all tied up with your costs. No money, no equipment, no supplies. From mouth mirrors and probes, to scalers and excavators, the instruments you need are not cheap. Neither are your supplies, which you have to replenish regularly. Consumables and disposables include supplies from Discount Disposables like OPTIM 33TB, facial masks and gloves.
You can’t practice alone. Dental staff cost the most for almost all practices, but you need them. Get at least one person to assist you and take care of your schedules. Of course, if you have one staff member, that means either that person or you know how to handle your accounting. To save on costs, you can outsource the accounting to a virtual assistant.
There are more factors involved in starting your own practice. Read up and ask questions. Find a mentor and ask them about how they started. The more you know, the more prepared you can be.