Orthodontist making 6-figure salary now $1M-plus in debt: 7 things to know

Dentists

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While dentists and orthodontists make some of the leading salaries in the U.S., the six figures salaries don't often make up the difference for the large sums they pay in student loans.

Michael Meru, DDS, is among the group orthodontists struggling to pay back student loans. Although he pays $1,590 a month, 10 percent of his income, he now owes more than $1.06 million in student loans, Business Insider reports.

Here are seven things to know:

1. At the rate Dr. Meru is paying his student loans now, his debt grows $130 a day, meaning in the next 20 years his loan balance will reach $2 million.

2. Dr. Meru graduated from the University of Southern California's Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry in Los Angles. When he entered school, interest rates were 8.5 percent.

3. However, the orthodontist is not the only one facing steep student debt. Today, 101 people owe $1 million or more in loans.

4. On average, dental students graduate with $287,331 in loans. The average debt total for medical student graduates is $190,694.

5. However, dentists have among the highest earnings of any professional in the country. The median salary for a dentist sits at $151,440 a year. Orthodontists earn around $208,000 annually.

6. Dr. Meru took out $601,506 in student loans during his seven-year education period. He has paid $39,000 back and consolidated his loans at a 7.25 percent interest rate. However, his balance still grew to add $148,948.

7. Dr. Meru is on a 25-year payment plan. When the 25 years comes to an end, he is expected to have paid $700,000 in income tax payments.

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