The Top 5 Problems Faced by Every Dentist in Asia

In this article, the author is talking about the top 5 problems that are faced by every Indian dentist who is planning to run his professional dental practice. Some of the points raised are related to the system and some to the daily in practice incidences that will test the patience of a dentist.


– Dr. Abhyudayda Shrivastava

In this article, the author is talking about the top 5 problems that are faced by every Indian dentist who is planning to run his professional dental practice. Some of the points raised are related to the system and some to the daily in practice incidences that will test the patience of a dentist.

Dental Practice Management


Dentistry is a global profession practiced all over the World. But the scenario of dentistry in India is very different from other developed countries. That’s why there is the need to understand the issues related to dentistry from an Indian point of view.

There is no shortage of talent. India has an abundance of smart and hard working dentists. But for any dentist to be successful there are many other associated factors, which need to be in order.

This is where Indian Dental Scenario is lacking. In this series of articles, I will be discussing some of the most relevant points that affect an Indian Dentist.

In this series of articles, I will be discussing some of the most relevant points that affect an Indian Dentist.

1. Clinic Location: Where to locate my dental practice?

Dental Practice Management

If you’re in a tier II city, you might still find a place where there are no dentists within a one-kilometer radius.

But in metros, there are soon going to be more dental clinics than grocery shops. We have a brigade of fresher dentists opening new clinics every year and everyone knows that the awareness for dentistry is more in the big cities.

So, everyone is starting their practice in Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Pune, Chennai – which means that now when you google ‘dentists in Uttam Nagar, Delhi’, your screen explodes with data overload.

The guidelines for choosing a clinic location have also been modified owing to these recent developments. Now the seniors advise you to open where there are less than ten dentists around the clinic and then advertise like there is no tomorrow.

Earlier, it used to be a matter of shame if you sent out regular pamphlets and stuck posters on walls. Now your poster is right next to the poster of ‘Fastest Wifi Connection’ and ‘PG Hostels for Boys’.

Now your poster is right next to the poster of ‘Fastest Wifi Connection’ and ‘PG Hostels for Boys’.

Dental Practice Management

Promotion or advertisement has now become one of the most crucial aspects related to the location of your clinic. You might be located anywhere, but without promotional activities, your practice will not pick up pace. So, along with location hunting the other problem to solve is How to Promote your dental practice?

In one of the previous articles, we had discussed the 2 best ways to promote your dental practice based on your location.

2 Best Ways to Market Your Dental Practice – Dental Practice Management

In this article, we will discuss on 2 most effective ways for the promotion of your dental practice. Use these 2 ways to make your dental practice more popular. The trick to successful dental practice management The Mantra of Promotion in Dental Practice Management In simple words – it’s the world of promotion and marketing.

2.Wax Carving: There has to be a better way

Dental Practice Management

In college, we have all carved models of teeth on wax blocks.

The flakes of wax would be found for the coming weeks in the corners of our bags, in our hair, food, everywhere.

Students would carve at restaurants, canteens, on the staircase, in the library and then they would come up with a masterpiece that would look beautiful. Just not like a tooth.

So then the carving would get rejected and the ordeal would begin again.

It is to teach us the contours of the teeth, but aren’t there better ways? Getting a carving rejected by the oral pathology is so traumatic, it makes us criminals and thieves. We start stealing others’ carvings or hiring others to do our dirty work.

It turns men into monsters! It has to stop!

Wax Carving

The carving sessions can be made more interactive and fun for the students. It will be fruitful only when they start enjoying it rather than being forced into it to finish the quota.

To make it more interactive and interesting teachers also need to give more efforts rather that just giving a single demo (when all the 100 BDS students fight like ants to get a view of the carving).

If taught properly, then the tooth carving can be a great asset to students.

One of the dentists has previously discussed how Tooth Carving teaches a lot about Life and Success. You can read the article below:


Wax tooth carving is one of the most memorable part of Dental Surgeon’s education life. Its a serious work and as well as fun. Pic Courtesy : It gives you a clear cut idea on the anatomy of all the tooth in a human mouth and this is essential for a dental student before handing and working on real tooth.

See The Next Slide To Know about the Trouble Number 3 for dentists

Unable to find the Canals! What To do?

Next Slide

3.Unable to Find Canals: Where is it ???

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Sometimes a canal just refuses to reveal itself to us.

You open the access cavity and locate the two canals but there has to be one more.

So you dig around a little. But no, there is no third canal.

It turns into a dental version of Dr. House MD episode and you walk around with your stick in a long corridor with a Hugh Laurie’s confused face expression transfixed on your face.

One of the most common problems faced by any dentist all over India.

The only way around is practice.

With time a dentist gets good at it. It is learning as you do more cases.

As a matter of fact, this problem is not only related to RCT. There is a bigger picture here. Most of the dentists who pass out from the dental colleges in India are not adept in many everyday clinical procedures.

It is bad but its the fact. The reasons can be many – low patients in college, disinterest in students, disinterested faculty or not getting a chance to see the cases among so many students.

Dental Practice Management

So, it is always better for a dentist to get a hands-on course on the basic clinical procedures before jumping completely into professional dental practice. Get better in the bread and butter procedures like RCT, Dentures, Composites, Extraction etc. If you want you can also join dental diploma courses to sharpen your clinical skills.

There are many dental diploma courses available today. You can read this article below to know how to choose the dental diploma/CDE course to improve your clinical skills.


In this article, we are going to discuss the diploma courses available for dentists after dental graduation (BDS/MDS). We will try to provide the information which will help in your search of We will try to provide the information which will help in your search of Diploma Courses in dentistry.

4.Airotor versus The World: The Friend & Foe 

Dental Practice Management

The air rotor is the dentist’s greatest ally.

You keep the ball bearings in shape and the machine well-lubricated because it is your bread and butter.

And in return, sometimes it stabs you right in the back like a foe.

You have placed cotton rolls in the patient’s mouth because there is too much saliva from everywhere. And then you want to finish the cavity just a little.

But uh oh! The air rotor falls in love with the cotton and then they become one with each other. A moment ago, the cotton that seemed like the softest thing in the world becomes a NiTi wire that just refuses to break its embrace with the bur.

If you want to save your time, give up and discard the bur. That is all that is left to do now. Otherwise let the patient watch as you clumsily fumble with a tweezer, trying to separate the strongest bond in the world – the bur and cotton.

The air rotor also has a little beef with the glove. But the glove’s bigger rival is the micromotor, especially during denture-trimming.

See the next slide for the most Serious Problem Number 5

When the patient takes you for granted and cancels the appointment just 30 minutes before the visit.

What can you do?

See Next Slide

5.Patient Cancels Appointments And you say “it’s ok, can we do it tomorrow 4 PM?

As doctors, we are taught to hold ourselves in high regards.

Dental Practice Management

We are told that if the patient respects us, he will listen to us and eventually, it will build the necessary trust we need to treat him.

In colleges, we are told that we’re supposed to be punctual and strict about our appointments.

We are also given the impression that patients also hold us in high regards and with respect.

Dental Practice Management

But in this modern day capitalism, things have changed fast.

“What we are not taught is the fact that the patients these days do not care about all that.”

If they are going out with a friend for a party, they would simply call your office and postpone the appointment citing some reason or the other. You will be waiting in your clinic for them (canceling some other patient appointment). But 30 minutes before the visit the patient will call you and INFORM that he will not come today for the visit.

Then they might ask you for an urgent appointment tomorrow (Sunday) because Monday they will get busy. In all these commotions many patients conveniently forget that the dentist also has his/her own plans for Sundays and Monday he/she might be having other patient appointments. 

How does a dentist react to this situation?

Well, how you react entirely depends on which stage of the dentist career cycle you are in.

If you are in the initial stages of your dental career, then you are not in a position to counter the patient.

And because you will be broke, you would accept the postponement and swallow your pride saying, ‘Oh that’s OK. So, is 4 pm tomorrow fine?’

Dental Practice Management

And then it will happen again and again and again.

Sometimes, the root canal treatment would fail simply because the patient came too late. But then, if your spirits aren’t broken fully, you would call him out on his negligence.

If your spirits, however, have been sacrificed at the altar of the modern day competitive capitalism, you would tell him that it’s no one’s fault but the tooth is gone now and the treatment would now be extraction and implant placement.

To all the dentists who have faced these problems, my message is ‘Hey, it will be OK. I don’t know when and how, but it will all be OK.’

Such scenarios will keep occurring until you reach that stage in your professional dentist career where you are no more dependent financially or psychologically on every patient that comes to your dental practice.

That will be the day when you can answer the patients who do not value your time like this:

Dental Practice Management

To be continued…

This is an ongoing series of articles and it will continue in next editions.

In this post, the author spoke on some of the issues that affect the dentists. These issues are related either the system of dentistry or to the everyday incidences that a dentist faces in his/her dental practice.

The author has previously posted some of his cartoons that depicted some of the real life awkward moments for a dentist in a practice. The cartoons were a big hit and went viral on the social media. You can have a look at the cartoons here:

The 4 Most Awkward Moments for a dentist in daily practice


Being a Dentist has many rewards & plus points. But being a dentist also means dealing with dental pain and other associated things. There are 4 awkward moments that a Dentist faces on a daily basis at work. But a dentist has no choice in the matter.

The author is a dentist currently working in New Delhi. He likes to write in Hindi and English
and draws cartoons too. He is soon coming out with his humorous novel about the love life of dentist titled ‘Lying Through My Teeth’. He can be contacted at You may follow his blog abhyused dentist-life blog to read more from him.