In modern dentistry, like other branches of medicine, a set of principles contribute in establishing codes of ethics. These codes which are based on ethical principles, religious beliefs and the social and cultural considerations guide the dental practitioners in their everyday practice and also establish expectations for dentists in fulfilling their ethical and professional duties to the patients, public and the profession itself. Ethical principles are the moral rules and foundations of justification source to be applied in order to exercise an ethical practice. The four principles of medical ethics; Respect for autonomy, Beneficence, non-maleficence and justice form the base of the modern dentistry that needs to be followed. The article gives an overview of how these principles form the backbone of modern day dental practice and thus, are indispensable to its working.