To determine the profile of individuals who requested dental treatment in universitybased and private clinics. Material and methods: A descriptive and exploratory study conducted between November of 2010 and March of 2011, using the European Medical Risk Related History Questionnaire. A total of 2000 individuals, 1000 who attended private clinics (PCs) and 1000 who attended the university-based clinic (UBC) were profiled. PCs were situated in 21 different areas of Portugal (37% on the coast side and 63% in the inner countryside), at which dental graduates of Portuguese Catholic University worked, and UBC was located in the city of Viseu, Portugal. The variables studied were: age, gender, level of education, American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) medical risk, occupation, medical history and medications. Results: Individuals who were aged over 45, had attained a low or middle level of education, were students or housewives, had an ASA risk II, suffered from fainting, or were taking antidepressants, anxiolytics, and hypnotics or cholesterol-lowering and triglyceride-lowering agents, had a greater probability of selecting the UBC, p<0.05. Individuals aged between 18 and 44, who had achieved a higher level of education, were employed, had an ASA risk of III or IV, or who suffered from angina pectoris or arrhythmias had a higher probability of selecting a PC, p<0.05. Conclusions: This study emphasizes the importance of, often overlooked, medical history in the clinical dental practice. The findings facilitate the evaluation and guidance in the updating of the undergraduate dental curriculum and the continuous education of dental professionals.