Where to Set Up Your Dental Practice – Urban Areas vs Small Towns?

In this post, we are exploring the possibilities and advantages/disadvantages of opening a dental practice in a small town compared to much wanted urban areas. Therefore, this post is aimed at both new dental graduates and also for experienced dental practitioners who wish to expand further. 

So, what do you feel is better for a Dentist?

To set up a practice in an Urban Area or a Small Town?

The reality is there is “no hard fast and applicable to all answer” for this. It will vary from one dentist to another depending on many factors.

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Therefore, assess your factors thoroughly.

See again the previous two slides where we have discussed the advantages and disadvantages of practicing in Urban and Small Towns.

Based on those points, ask yourself the following questions before deciding on starting/expanding your dental practice set up in an URBAN/METRO location

  1. What is your exact financial backing/scenario?
    • Can you afford to spend money to set up a practice in an Urban area?
    • Can you afford the monthly rental if you do not have your own land?
    • Can you pay for the cost of marketing your dental practice in Urban Area?
    • Can you take a huge loan and repay the premiums in time?
  2. Are you mentally (with all awareness) ready to face the following:
    • High competition with thousands of Dentist?
    • The struggle to continually get new patients?
    • Additional expenditure and extra efforts to promote yourself among the crowd of dentists?
    • Significant financial costs for establishing & maintaining clinic + considerable promotional activities.
    • A lot of stress to handle.

If the above questions make you uneasy, then maybe URBAN AREA dental practice is not suitable for you at the moment.


Please keep in mind that we are not saying that NO NEW DENTIST should start a dental practice in an URBAN AREA. One may not have all the favorable factors at the same time to start an Urban Dental Practice. However, there must be a proper planning and steely resolve.

Though tough, yet, if you succeed in an URBAN PRACTICE (facing all the difficult points mentioned above), then you stand to gain a lot financially and socially. Many dentists once they succeed in Urban Dental Practice expand to other cities or smaller towns.

The reverse can also be done, which is the focus of this article. You can always start a practice in a smaller town, build on it, make a name for yourself, establish financial stability and regular income for your family, accumulate some savings and then expand to Urban Areas.

We hope this article gave you useful points to consider for your dental career.

In our final discussion with dentists, we found that the practices set up in small towns showed a lower gross income (compared to the similar Urban city based practices).

However, the overall financial losses or the failure rate of dental practices in Urban/Metro areas were much higher.

In contrast, majority (almost more than 96%) practices in small towns were financially successful within a year and then subsequently generating a stable earning for the dentist.

Hence, as we mentioned before, STABILITY is the KEY here.

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