Dentist Salary in USA- A Brief Guide

The average salary of dentists in the USA was a handsome $158,940 in the year 2020, as per US News report. Further, the highest-paid professionals took home an average of $208,000 for 2020, while the lowest-paid professionals earned $115,290. Also, 6% future growth is predicted for dentist jobs by the Bureau of Labor Statistics between 2021-2031 and close to 7,700 job opportunities are also expected to be available in this period. 

The average dentist salary in USA can hover around $81,360 for a dental hygienist and $143,730 for a prosthodontist. The dentist salary in USA can also jump up to $311,460 per year, if the professional is an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. Going by the median average, the dentist salary in US per month is around $13,245. All these findings have been reported by U.S. News. 

Average Salary of Dentist in US- Top States 

Here’s looking at the highest-paying States in the USA for Dentists, according to U.S. News: 

  • Rhode Island- $258,920
  • Alaska- $242,850
  • Vermont- $254,190
  • New Hampshire- $222,430
  • Maine- $236,060 

Of course, the salary for dentist freshers in US will be lower than these amounts, and could hover around $115,290 as mentioned earlier. 

Comparison Between Salaries in India and US in the Field of Dentistry

There is literally no comparison on this count. Here is a break-up of Indian dental salaries according to Forms Adda: 

  • The average salary is around INR 75,200 per month with the range between INR 36,900-117,000 per month. 
  • Dental Surgeons earn between INR 4-15 lakhs per annum. 
  • Dentists earn between INR 2.4-9 lakh per annum. 
  • Dental Assistants earn between INR 2-8 lakh per annum. 
  • Professors earn between INR 3.5-11 lakh per annum. 
  • Senior and consultant dental surgeons can earn up to a maximum of INR 23-24 lakh per year, while dental surgeons can go up to INR 17.8 lakh per year. 

If you contrast that with the highest salaries for dentists in the USA, then you will find that $258,920 is paid in Rhode Island. This equates to a whopping INR 2, 13, 61, 444 per year (INR 2.13 crore). The median salary of $158,940 per year works out to a sizable INR 1, 31, 12, 884 (INR 1.31 crore) alone! 

How to Practice Dentistry in USA 

Here are some steps that you should keep in mind: 

  • Licensure examinations require eligibility and this is possible through completing a US-based dental school’s CODA-accredited course. Foreign-trained professionals may undertake the Advanced Standing Programs or DDS/DMD option’s tailored version of 2-3 years. 
  • With DDS/DMD, dentists from other countries can get an American Dental degree for practicing in the USA. 
  • Applicants from other countries may require a course-by-course report of credentials from the ECE for eligibility to take the integrated national board examination. The WES is another evaluation type. 
  • The INBDE examination has to be cleared and one has to obtain the DENTPIN number alongside. 
  • Professionals should apply to the American Dental Association before registration and scheduling for the INBDE. 
  • You should then sit for the examination at a US-based center. This comprises 360 questions on the first day and 140 questions on the second day. 
  • Getting a DDS degree also requires a high score in TOEFL (100 or more). 
  • You can then apply to institutions for your DMD/DDS via the CAAPID application which opens from March to February every year. 
  • Upon graduation and obtaining other necessary certification, you can practice dentistry in the USA. 


Dentistry is a rewarding career in the USA, offering lucrative annual salaries for aspirants. You should note the application requirements at leading institutions if you wish to study in the USA accordingly. 


What is the starting salary for a dentist in the US?

The average starting salary is $120,608 as per PayScale, for entry-level dentists with less than one year of experience.

Are dentists wealthy in US?

Reports indicate how dentists usually earn an average of $180,000 each year in the US, making them wealthy enough by national standards. They are automatically in the highest-5% of income earners in the country.

Where are dentists paid most in the US?

Some of the States with the highest salaries for dentists include Alaska, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Maine, and Vermont.

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