Is dental school debt as difficult to pay off as medical school debt?

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I am very interested in medical school or dental school. I was wondering about the debts from each profession. I have so far read a lot about the huge debt from med school but I was wondering if this was also the case for graduating from dental school.
 
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According to two dentists I shadowed, they said if you plan wisely you could pay off debt in 5 years.
However, they both graduated 10 years ago and things have changed since. So I'm not sure.
 
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nonociceptors

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I am very interested in medical school or dental school. I was wondering about the debts from each profession. I have so far read a lot about the huge debt from med school but I was wondering if this was also the case for graduating from dental school.
So you're deciding between medicine and dentistry based on the debt?
 
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Dental schools are more expensive. However, dental schools dont require residency so you would start working 2-3 years earlier than you would for medical. Unless you plan to specialize.
 
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DentalDoge

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Here are some facts, and you decide.

My dental school charges about $100k/yr for OOS ... and $33k/yr for med school.
 
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Mad Jack

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Dental school graduates tend to have much higher debt to income ratios than medical students.
 

Kittenz

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I am very interested in medical school or dental school. I was wondering about the debts from each profession. I have so far read a lot about the huge debt from med school but I was wondering if this was also the case for graduating from dental school.
The dental school I'm attending charges the exact same tuition for our in-state & out-of-state medical and dental students. Our only significant difference in debt is the >3-year long residencies that the medical students are required to attend, which causes their debt to accrue interest while they're unable to significantly pay it back during that extended time.
 

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http://www.dentistryiq.com/articles/2014/09/starting-a-dental-practice-how-can-you-afford-it.html
Yea right, especially when the later are in residency.
That's a rather shortsighted way of looking at things. Residency isn't really a job so much as an educational program that provides a stipend. Most dentists are saddled with so much debt that they are forced to start as associates, hampering their income for years. Many are also required to complete a residency, however brief, before being able to practice in some states. Dental residencies typically pay even less than medical ones, and, worse still, many of the specialty residencies that are actually desirable actually charge tuition.

All of this amounts to having more income for the first three or so years of your career, after being vastly overshadowed by physicians.


Not only are dentist earnings declining in real dollars, they are being crushed when you factor in inflation.

Now, the average dentist needs to chip away at their loans some before they can even save up enough to open a practice and reach their true income potential. It costs an average of $500,000 to open a new practice (link pasted at top because my paste function is broken), what amounts to a massive second loan just to be an owner and go from making 130k to 180k. Most physicians can hop right into practice, no investment required, earning nearly 200k to start in primary care or 284k as a specialist. They invest more time in residency, but in return often get to mostly avoid the startup costs of dentistry in return.

On a strictly monetary basis, medicine carries the day on every level. It's all the non-monetary stuff that should be your deciding factor, however.
 

allantois

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THIS. To me, the everyday lifestyle that being a dentist will provide FAR outweighs the extra money I would make as an MD.
Don't forget you'd have to work an additional day a week to make that extra $3000 a year :D

:bag:
 

Incis0r

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Depends on the dental school you go to. A 250k education or less as seen in many IS schools is easier to pay off than a med school education of similar cost....due to the fact that you start repayment immediately after dental school whereas med grads have to put loans on hold for residency. Btw, during their residency years, the loans still accrue interest.

A 500K dental school education? I wouldn't touch that with a 10 ft pole. If my only option for dental school was a 500K education, I'd go into a different field. To me, it's just not worth going into debt for a long time. Many schools are approaching this mark and you'll quickly find that, even if you pay 3K/month, it'll take you 30 years to pay it all off (and you'll end up paying $1.2M for it).
 

510586

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THIS. To me, the everyday lifestyle that being a dentist will provide FAR outweighs the extra money I would make as an MD.
They had a post on the dental boards about comparing dentistry to medical specialties, and a big reason some medical specialties earn more is due to the many extra hours they work in comparison to general dentists. Medical students also discount the fact that dental school does not only allow one to be a dentist but also provides multiple opportunities to specialize which can increase ones potential salary (while often maintaining a superior lifestyle).
 
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allantois

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They had a post on the dental boards about comparing dentistry to medical specialties, and a big reason some medical specialties earn more is due to the many extra hours they work in comparison to general dentists. Medical students also discount the fact that dental school does not only allow one to be a dentist but also provides multiple opportunities to specialize which can increase ones potential salary (while often maintaining a superior lifestyle).
And dental specialists can make a lot more working a lot less than medical specialists. Also, I would rather make a lot less than give my authority to hospital bureaucrats.
 
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Lesley

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I am very interested in medical school or dental school. I was wondering about the debts from each profession. I have so far read a lot about the huge debt from med school but I was wondering if this was also the case for graduating from dental school.
As there are many more non-profit employment opportunities for physicians, the opportunity to have their debt forgiven with no taxes owed on the forgiveness after ten years in repayment, as it stands right now, is much greater for physicians. Add to that the higher cost of dental school, the financial and others costs of starting or buying a dental practice and possibly lower pay, dentistry may prove to be significantly more financially challenging.

http://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-student-loan-program-proves-costly-1448042862
 
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Incis0r

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As there are many more non-profit employment opportunities for physicians, the opportunity to have their debt forgiven with no taxes owed on the forgiveness after ten years in repayment, as it stands right now, is much greater for physicians. Add to that the higher cost of dental school and the financial and others costs of starting a practice dentistry is more challenging.
Interesting- could you share the name of this program please?
And does this apply even if you pay the absolute minimum monthly payment on loans?
 

allantois

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Incis0r

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@Weakfart , I'm tempted.

Just imagine the possibilities...no loan issues. You could make a monthly minimum payment below 1K/month and have it all gone- poof- in 10 years.

Dental on the other hand- 3K/month minimum payment for 30 years. Not feeling the love xD
 
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allantois

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Btw, I retract my earlier posts comparing dentistry to medicine: they are true for currently practicing physicians and dentists; things won't be as good for currently graduating dentists.
 

Incis0r

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These costs are UNBELIEVABLE. I wish dental schools were this cheap.

SCHOOL Resident Tuition Non-Resident Tuition Average graduate indebtedness (Graduating Class)
UNTHSC/TCOM $13,078 $28,766 $139,337 (2014)
LECOM-PA $31,030 $31,030 $158,153 (2014)
LECOM-Brad. $29,480 $31,610 $163,080 (2014)
WCU-COM $39,800 $39,800 N/A
LUCOM $40,000 $40,000 N/A
UP-KYCOM $40,120 $40,120 $162,300 (2014)
CUSOM $40,600 $40,600 N/A
KCU-COM $42,450 $42,450 $254,000 (2013)
VCOM-Auburn $42,500 $42,500 N/A
VCOM-CC $42,500 $42,500 N/A
VCOM-VC $42,500 $42,500 $173,644 (2014)
ACOM $42,580 $42,580 N/A
OU-HCOM $30,530 $43,540 $186,857 (2014)
DMU-COM $44,042 $44,042 $218,227 (2014)
LMU-DCOM $44,140 $44,140 $234,974 (2014)
OSU-COM $22,835 $44,966 $185,484 (2014)
PCOM $45,036 $45,036 $181,968 (2014)
GA-PCOM $45,036 $45,036 $174,198 (2014)
TouroCOM-NY $45,850 $45,850 $209,529 (2014)
MU-COM $46,305 $46,305 N/A
BCOM $46,650 $46,650 N/A
ATSU-KCOM $48,124 $48,124 $268,800 (2013)
ATSU-SOMA $48,136 $48,136 $300,099 (2013)
RVUCOM $48,378 $48,378 $222,974 (2014)
TUCOM-CA $48,510 $48,510 N/A
PNWU-COM $49,000 $49,000 $253,963 (2014)
NSU-COM $44,945 $49,235 $224,685 (2014)
WVSOM $20,450 $50,200 $242,742 (2013)
TUNCOM $50,450 $50,450 $266,000 (2013)
UNECOM $51,660 $51,660 $233,000 (2014)
WesternU/COMP $52,215 $52,215 $258,919 (2014)
NYIT-COM $52,430 $52,430 $180,000 (2013)
AZCOM/MWU $58,030 $58,030 $288,190 (2014)
RowanSOM $36,360 $58,340 $173,281 (2014)
CCOM/MWU $59,826 $59,826 $270,816 (2014)
MSUCOM $41,724 $83,718 $202,022 (2013)

This is the tuition, and average graduate indebtedness of every DO school listed in the CIB. I sorted them by out of state tuition cost. I am just amazed! Going to LECOM could save you $80,000 compared to going to other schools like AZCOM! Is the education between these schools really that different? Is it really worth an extra $80,000.

Why is there such a disparity in tuition prices? Are some of these schools just getting über rich of medical students? I don't understand how there can be such a great discrepancy.

Another point I noticed was the outrageous debt of graduates in 2013 and 2014. Those numbers are not even representative of what medical students who are starting med school now will have. As tuition rises the debt will rise as well.

I'm not going into medicine for money so this isn't turning me away from continuing down this path, but it is definitely making me rethink if family practice is a reasonable option... you could be tied down to your debt the rest of your life. A specialist who makes $100,000 more a year just sounds more practical with that much debt.
 

Weakfart

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@Weakfart , I'm tempted.

Just imagine the possibilities...no loan issues. You could make a monthly minimum payment below 1K/month and have it all gone- poof- in 10 years.

Dental on the other hand- 3K/month minimum payment for 30 years. Not feeling the love xD
Why doesn't the public sector love dentists????
 

Weakfart

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True- but it's still cheaper than NYU dental. NYU Med is about 80K/yr. NYU Dent is easily 100K/yr.

I noticed that our friend Touro figures quite prominently in the list I quoted.
Oh yeah, what I was saying was that even the top tier expensive med schools are the same price as the average costing dental school, and much cheaper than our expensive ones. I admit it is tempting to try to switch though.
 
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Weakfart

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Maybe I should set up a meeting with my pre-health advisors to see how feasible switching to Medicine truly is.

Not too hard, if you have research down and pat only thing you'll need to do is shadow some specialities and volunteer a bit more. Other than that, the huge obstacle is the MCAT.
 
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Lesley

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True- but it's still cheaper than NYU dental. NYU Med is about 80K/yr. NYU Dent is easily 100K/yr.

I noticed that our friend Touro figures quite prominently in the list I quoted.
True- but it's still cheaper than NYU dental. NYU Med is about 80K/yr. NYU Dent is easily 100K/yr.

I noticed that our friend Touro figures quite prominently in the list I quoted.

NYU closer to $120,000 a year not including interest on debt and annual price increases on all the expenses including tuition.
http://dental.nyu.edu/academicprograms/dds-program/tuition.html
 

Lesley

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Maybe I should set up a meeting with my pre-health advisors to see how feasible switching to Medicine truly is.
If it is something if you are considering, you should look into now. Even if it holds you back a year, in the long run, a year is nothing. If in the end you decide you would rather be a physician you will look back on this year as a very wise choice. If you stay the course of dentistry, you will always know you took the time to think about this destiny changing event. You will have comfort knowing you made as thoughtful and as thorough decision as possible. When you specialize in medicine they pay you even if it is a "small stipend" when you specialize. Better to get a small $50,000" stipend than borrowing another $100,000 a year for two of three more years on top of dental school for a dental specialty. Also, while they may take away the incentive of PSLF, who knows? For those signed up now, they may or may not be grandfathered in. As a dentist, I can tell you that running a private practice and dealing with insurance companies that are squeezing dentists is only getting worse. It has taken a significant downturn in the last few years. If your plan is to own a private dental office someday in the hopes of a higher income, you will have to deal with or hire people to deal with this on top of managing an office, managing a dental team, managing patients and, no less, doing good dentistry. If you don't want to manage an office you can be a dental associate, but there are far more financially lucrative options available to physicians as associates. I can tell you that I graduated dental school more than 33 years ago. It's advice, in hind site, I wish someone had given me. Good Luck.
 
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EasTexan

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If it is something if you are considering, you should look into now. Even if it holds you back a year, in the long run, a year is nothing. If in the end you decide you would rather be a physician you will look back on this year as a very wise choice. If you stay the course of dentistry, you will always know you took the time to think about this destiny changing event. You will have comfort knowing you made as thoughtful and as thorough decision as possible. When you specialize in medicine they pay you even if it is a "small stipend" when you specialize. Better to get a small $50,000" stipend than borrowing another $100,000 a year for two of three more years on top of dental school for a dental specialty. Also, while they may take away the incentive of PSLF, who knows? For those signed up now, they may or may not be grandfathered in. As a dentist, I can tell you that running a private practice and dealing with insurance companies that are squeezing dentists is only getting worse. It has taken a significant downturn in the last few years. If your plan is to own a private dental office someday in the hopes of a higher income, you will have to deal with or hire people to deal with this on top of managing an office, managing a dental team, managing patients and, no less, doing good dentistry. If you don't want to manage an office you can be a dental associate, but there are far more financially lucrative options available to physicians as associates. I can tell you that I graduated dental school more than 33 years ago. It's advice, in hind site, I wish someone had given me. Good Luck.
Regarding the bold, is this not also a problem in medicine? I'm fairly certain insurance has been squeezing physicians for awhile now? Not to mention all the other "squeezing" going on, hello meaningful abuse, etc. I'd also wonder what the actual earnings per hour are for a physician versus a dentist? On call, m-f, etc. Just some thoughts, seems like a lot of "the grass is greener" going around the forums lately.

I have nothing against lengthy discussions concerning the massive problem of dental school debt (it is a huge problem), but comparing dental to medicine seems apples to oranges to me as far as job function and lifestyle?
 

Lesley

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Regarding the bold, is this not also a problem in medicine? I'm fairly certain insurance has been squeezing physicians for awhile now? Not to mention all the other "squeezing" going on, hello meaningful abuse, etc. I'd also wonder what the actual earnings per hour are for a physician versus a dentist? On call, m-f, etc. Just some thoughts, seems like a lot of "the grass is greener" going around the forums lately.

I have nothing against lengthy discussions concerning the massive problem of dental school debt (it is a huge problem), but comparing dental to medicine seems apples to oranges to me as far as job function and lifestyle?
Regarding the bold, is this not also a problem in medicine? I'm fairly certain insurance has been squeezing physicians for awhile now? Not to mention all the other "squeezing" going on, hello meaningful abuse, etc. I'd also wonder what the actual earnings per hour are for a physician versus a dentist? On call, m-f, etc. Just some thoughts, seems like a lot of "the grass is greener" going around the forums lately.

Regarding the bold, is this not also a problem in medicine? I'm fairly certain insurance has been squeezing physicians for awhile now? Not to mention all the other "squeezing" going on, hello meaningful abuse, etc. I'd also wonder what the actual earnings per hour are for a physician versus a dentist? On call, m-f, etc. Just some thoughts, seems like a lot of "the grass is greener" going around the forums lately.

I have nothing against lengthy discussions concerning the massive problem of dental school debt (it is a huge problem), but comparing dental to medicine seems apples to oranges to me as far as job function and lifestyle?
Regarding the highlighting you did on my post, if insurance companies are representing more and more dental patients, dental offices that participate with them, almost a necessity, have to be prepared to handle insurance issues write offs, denials, patient confusion regarding their insurance benefits, waiting for delayed insurance payments, resubmitting claims, patients planning their dental work around their insurance benefits, etc. All these issues involve additional expenses and headache. Insurance companies do not pay doctors or dentists more for their services because we have to deal with them to get paid. Larger medical practices, hospitals are better set up to deal with insurance companies. Small dental practices are less equipped. Just my humble opinion.
 

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EM is the best deal in medicine right now... work FT for 10 years and make a ton of money (400k/year), then cut your hours to 20/wk while still making good money (200k/year).

Psych is not that bad either since psych residency is not too demanding, and one can moonlight in 2nd or 3rd year (depending of your program) as resident... But you gotta like psych. Then again most physicians (or most people) don't like their job anyway!

Dental school is too expensive! I don't understand how someone can stomach 400k in student loan for 125k-150k starting salary...
 
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EasTexan

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Regarding the highlighting you did on my post, if insurance companies are representing more and more dental patients, dental offices that participate with them, almost a necessity, have to be prepared to handle insurance issues write offs, denials, patient confusion regarding their insurance benefits, waiting for delayed insurance payments, resubmitting claims, patients planning their dental work around their insurance benefits, etc. All these issues involve additional expenses and headache. Insurance companies do not pay doctors or dentists more for their services because we have to deal with them to get paid. Larger medical practices, hospitals are better set up to deal with insurance companies. Small dental practices are less equipped. Just my humble opinion.
Fair enough, I read it as a complaint towards low reimbursement and not the actual processing of it. Oddly enough I work medical IT (physician group), but my office is in our practice's billing department. So I do see first hand the team it takes to service insurance claims.

Is it that bad or will it get that bad in dentistry? Who knows. From what I've seen first hand and on dentaltown it's not as convoluted, but I'm not a dentist or a dental biller so I speak from ignorance.
 

TheFutureFatMan

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FEP is higher as a dentist?


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fellowstudent92

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Dental school can be cheaper than medical school or as expensive as medical school if you are a competitive applicant to get into your state school or other out of state state schools that you can get instate residency in after the first year. If you are not competitive, then u risk a massive debt load at a private dental school. Simple as that.
 
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i D M D

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Dental school can be cheaper than medical school or as expensive as medical school if you are a competitive applicant to get into your state school or other out of state state schools that you can get instate residency in after the first year. If you are not competitive, then u risk a massive debt load at a private dental school. Simple as that.
Are you implying attending a private program means one has not been competitive enough?!
 
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Incis0r

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Are you implying attending a private program means one has not been competitive enough?!
You just stated the converse of his statement:
"If you have a massive debt load at a private school, then you are not competitive."

You can be a competitive applicant and attend a private school. I can think of several people off the top of my head who are very competitive for several public schools, but have chosen to go to private schools instead.
 
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TheFutureFatMan

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You guys must have a lot of free time....


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i D M D

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If I am misinterpreting something, please correct me.
Well, the fact that my statement was rather a question means I requested futher clarification from the OP. You might ask why I used "!" At the end now. My answer would be that the OP's statement seemed odd to me. To further answer your question, I was solely asking about his idea about private schools and their admission requirements. I know this thread is about debt so I no longer take others time about a matter not directly related to the title of this discussion. PM me for further logical discussion if you feel I could be of any help calrifying my initial question.
 
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fellowstudent92

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Sorry let me rephrase, I didnt think you would try to disprove the legitimacy of my statement by using logical principles lol. Anyways, what I meant to say was that if u really cared about debt, and your sole interest is to save money, then u need to be competitive to gain entrance to a state school (this would dispel any worries about a huge debt load). If you are at a private school, its most likely because you couldnt get into your state school because you werent competitive enough or u just have no regard for money or ur financially stupid (note however that this can technically still mean your academically smart and competitive to get into the state school but u didnt care). Take ur pick. BUT because this thread is all about worries for a reduced debt load, I think we can rule out the people that dont care about the money and ones that are financially stupid, leaving the only issue at hand is to see if ur competitive enough to get into your state school.
 

i D M D

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Sorry let me rephrase, I didnt think you would try to disprove the legitimacy of my statement by using logical principles lol. Anyways, what I meant to say was that if u really cared about debt, and your sole interest is to save money, then u need to be competitive to gain entrance to a state school (this would dispel any worries about a huge debt load). If you are at a private school, its most likely because you couldnt get into your state school because you werent competitive enough or u just have no regard for money or ur financially stupid (note however that this can technically still mean your academically smart and competitive to get into the state school but u didnt care). Take ur pick. BUT because this thread is all about worries for a reduced debt load, I think we can rule out the people that dont care about the money and ones that are financially stupid, leaving the only issue at hand is to see if ur competitive enough to get into your state school.
Oh dear! Nom nom argument. Let me get home and will get back to you.