Over the next few weeks, over 6,000 dentists in the United States will graduate from one of 66 accredited dental schools and enter the workforce. Given that, where should they head geographically?
From a pure numbers perspective, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has identified the states with the largest needs for dentists.
States with Largest Shortage of Dentists (by population)
- New York
- North Carolina
- Pennsylvania and Ohio
For more detail, visit HRSA’s analysis of dental shortages by state.
However, there are other factors that often factor into this decision. Depending on your preferences, these will probably include things like:
- Presence of fluoridated water
- Locations with the healthiest teeth and gums (or worst)
- Frequency of dental visits
- Incidence of dental insurance vs fee for service
- Consumption of sugar beverages
- Incidence of smoking
- Highest dental treatment costs per state
To learn more about these factors, WalletHub has organized best and worst dental states for most of these factors as well.
By all means, prevention is far better than treatment. The decision for these 6,000 new dental graduates will have many more factors as well.