Journal of the International Clinical Dental Research Organization

: 2021  |  Volume : 13  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 79-

Bargaining in dentistry

Sonali Deshmukh 
 Department Of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics, Dr. D.Y. Patil Dental College and Hospital, Dr. D. Y. Patil Vidyapeeth, Pune, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Sonali Deshmukh
Department Of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics, Dr. D.Y. Patil Dental College and Hospital, Dr. D. Y. Patil Vidyapeeth, Pune, Maharashtra

How to cite this article:
Deshmukh S. Bargaining in dentistry.J Int Clin Dent Res Organ 2021;13:79-79

How to cite this URL:
Deshmukh S. Bargaining in dentistry. J Int Clin Dent Res Organ [serial online] 2021 [cited 2022 Jul 3 ];13:79-79
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Full Text


Dentistry in India has always been treated as a second-grade citizen. Most of the students opt for dentistry not because they love doing it but they missed the bus of MBBS admission. The reasons could be varied depending on the situation. Even though the above statement is true, India has second highest number of dentists in the world. 2.7 lakh are registered with Dental Council of India. In 2020, the country achieved more than ideal dentists-to-population ration of 1:5000, as against the 1:7500 recommended by the WHO.[1] As we see a vast disparity between demand and supply, the outcome of being dentist is disastrous. Not only students who seek dentistry because they do not get into medicine, but also the patients also treat dentist as a second grade doctors. Times are changing for medical practitioners as compared to older days where doctors were treated as Gods and specialist as super Gods. However, apathy toward dentist is grave. It could be partially because of the number of dentists to population ratio in India is more than 1:5000.[1] There is no standardization of fee structure among the dentist. In my 23 years of practice as a clinician, I think most bargained profession after vegetable vendors are dentistry. It is heartening to see how patients are bargaining at dental offices for various treatments. Not only they bargain for the cost of the treatment but also make the dentist aware of the charges elsewhere, as if dentistry is a window-shopping activity. I often ask these patients if they have tried bargaining at Movie theater or a restaurant or for that matter at any medical doctor or medical hospital? This often make me think what could be the reason behind this behavior of patients. I am sure all dentists be it BDS, MDS, or PhD holders must have gone through this agony of hard bargain for treatment cost from the patients. As a family of four, a patient is ready to shell out more than 2k for short-lived entertainment but for long-term dental filling of 1k is expensive for these patients. Its time for all of us to understand the problem of bargaining in dentistry. Is it we as dentists are at fault in a rat race of establishing ourselves, that we stoop so low to the demands of these bargainers? Or we have lost the solidarity amongst ourselves that we do not care for the young struggling dental practitioners? Although this topic is far less important as compared to any other topics of todays relevance such a recovering from COVID-19 pandemic, it defiantly needs attention from dental fraternity. The question we should ask ourself is, is it we all are at fault or there is a greater need to create general awareness among public about need of dental treatment and its effects on general health of an individual. When all old and young minds in dentistry will come together, the solution to this treatment of being second-grade citizen will reveal itself.

No one should drive a hard bargain with an artist.


1Indian Dentistry Is in Crisis– The New Dental Commission Bill Should Step Up. Available from: [Last accessed on 2021 Nov 01].