Starting a Dental Practice

starting a dental practiceWhether you’re right out of dental school or have a few years in an associate position, you may be considering going out on your own. At Menlo Dental Transitions, we understand that starting a dental practice is both an alluring and exciting proposition. But, it’s not your only option. Many dental professionals who are thinking about starting a dental practice choose instead to look at buying an existing practice, oftentimes from a dentist who is retiring. That’s where our services at Menlo Dental Transitions can be of help to you.

There are many benefits to purchasing an existing dental practice. The biggest one, of course, is bypassing the many challenges of starting from scratch. When you buy an established dental practice, you have a fully equipped office, a competent staff, and a solid patient base already built in. There is no need to spend the time and energy getting your practice off the ground…your efforts will lie in only making the practice better!

Speaking of how things have gotten better, we were thinking recently about the evolution of dentistry. In particular, the evolution of toothpaste. This may seem like a random thing to ponder. But in our business, we believe it is important to be knowledgeable about our clients’ industry. At the very least, it makes for interesting conversation. In any case, thinking about dentistry caused us to wonder what people have used over the years to take care of their teeth. We did some research, and here is what we discovered:

Recorded history documents a rudimentary form of toothpaste as early as 5,000 B.C. At the time, Egyptians used a cream composed of powdered ashes. Used with a chewing stick, the process at least removed built-up gunk through its abrasive nature. That original powder evolved throughout the centuries to add more abrasives, such as oyster shells. In China and India, they were using something similar by around 500 B.C. and were adding mint, ginseng, and salt for flavor. If you’re starting a dental practice, you’ll likely end up with happier patients if you focus on some of those better flavors!

It wasn’t until the mid 1800s when any significant change was made in toothpaste. Before then, the practice spread across the globe. Unfortunately, chewing sticks and toothpaste were only available to the upper classes. The general public didn’t have a way to ensure proper dental hygiene.

Colgate began mass-producing a new toothpaste product in 1873. Abrasive ingredients were still being used, which were doing well to remove plaque and tartar. However, they were also removing enamel, which wasn’t good for long-term oral health.

In 1914, fluoride was added to toothpaste. Around the same time, the tin holders were replaced with lead/alloy tubes. During World War II’s lead shortage, plastic stepped up to fill the void. Also during the early 20th century, the amount of abrasives was reduced while flavorings increased.

Recent history has probably made the most significant impact on toothpaste. Since the 1980s, toothpaste has started to provide a number of options. As a result, today you’ll see a variety of toothpastes including those for whitening, sensitive teeth, and kids. Whether starting a dental practice or buying an existing one, you’ll likely include all of these types of toothpaste as options for your patients.

Most of us today can hardly imagine the primitive origins of toothpaste and dental care. We are very lucky to have all of the modern advances in dentistry. And we are fortunate to have dental professionals who we can trust to help us maintain proper oral hygiene. The dental industry has come a long way since 5,000 B.C.!

If you would like to consider buying an established practice rather than starting a dental practice from the ground up, contact us at Menlo Dental Transitions. We’re in the business of helping the dental community on both the buying and selling ends of the transition spectrum. We’d love the opportunity to assist you with your next move!