In Featured Perspectives Ariana Portalatin 
  • Small
  • Medium
  • Large

How 3 dentists chose where to practice

There are many factors dentists may consider when choosing where to practice, including community need, clinical support and proximity to home.

Here, three dentists share with Becker's how they chose where to practice:

Scott Terry, DDS (North Vernon, Ind.): I considered the actual need in the area for another practitioner. The practice I joined was rapidly growing. Most of my colleagues wanted to stay in a more urban setting. There was a greater opportunity in a more rural practice.

Michael Davis, DDS. Smiles of Santa Fe (N.M.): Nearly 20 years ago, I simply desired a location and demographic in which, as a restorative dentist, I wasn't forced into amalgam production. In the initial phase of my career, I witnessed how destructive amalgam restoration was in [the] generation of fractured teeth, cracked tooth syndrome and fractures leading to pulpal necrosis.

Thus, I relocated to find a patient demographic supportive of my clinical findings in restorative dentistry. The population was far more concerned about mercury toxicity related to dental amalgam. I was more focused on conservation of sound tooth structure and the wedging damage generated by a high modulus of elasticity material (dental amalgam) upon tooth structure.

David Buchan, DDS (San Clemente, Calif.): I've had two separate dental practices with a two-year volunteer stint overseas in between. My first practice I chose because it was a thriving, successful practice during a slower economy; and because I wanted to run my own practice, not be an employee, I knew that it would pay for itself in a short time. The negative was that it was 25 minutes away from my home in San Clemente, so not a part of the community where I live. Very busy practice, no HMOs but almost 100 percent PPO/unions. [I sold it] 10 years later and volunteered overseas.

My second practice I chose because I knew the retiring doctor, many of the patients already knew me (church) and it's less than two miles from my house (no commute), plus a 40-year history with two different, quality dentists. No HMOs, mostly FFS and good PPOs. Lower cost lease (prior owner owns building). [I've ] been here [for] 13 years. [It's] one of the best decisions I ever made.

Copyright © 2022 Becker's Healthcare. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy. Cookie Policy. Linking and Reprinting Policy.