Dentists recommend that you have a dental check-up every six months if you can. This recommendation is not just to create work for the dental industry, but for the good health of your teeth and overall wellness. As such, the dental industry has been growing steadily, with more and more oral health services emerging with the advancements in technology. Understanding this growth requires that we first know what this industry is all about.
The dental industry incorporates both services and the tools used to provide these services. Ideally, it is divided into dental consumables and fixed dental equipment. In the simplest of terms, dental consumables are those products dentists use in their role of providing dental healthcare. Any medicine or products used for treating any dental ailments, or improving your dental health like implants, biomaterials, crowns and bridges, endodontic and other products all fall under this category.
The other category is dental equipment. These tools dentists use to examine, restore, manipulate and remove teeth with, among other dental activities. Such tools include consumables and fixed machines for advanced dental care. Dental implants, which fall under the dental consumables currently have the fastest growth in the market. This can be attributed to cosmetic dental health both in younger and older individuals.
Now that you understand what entails the dental industry, here are some of the latest trends in the same.
The Changing Trends of the Industry
More and more people, especially adults are minimizing their visits to the dentists for two main reasons. These are finances and fear of pain. Most are not conversant or lack knowledge of what is required of them. People no longer trust the media and political trust when it comes to advertising. The decrease in the number of patients that require dental health services is threatening the growth of this industry. However, the industry is taking measures to educate people on the need to seek and be consistent with checking their health care.
Despite this apparent trend, there has been a general improvement in the industry. In 2019, the industry grew by 2%, raking an annual growth of $138 billion. This growth has been attributed to the rise in income levels of the middle class, and low unemployment rate. Individuals, who were initially afraid of the cost and were not sure if insurance would cover the same can now pay from their pockets for such services. This growth is expected to continue in the coming years as the industry creates more awareness.
Dental care treatment is set to increase in the proceeding decade as a result of this awareness. There will be an increasing demand for treatment, which will result in the manufacture of more products and the development of more facilities. This growth is projected to significantly spur the growth of the private industry.
As of the moment, the United States (US) leads the market share of the dental industry. Europe and Asia follow closely and then Africa, Middle East, and the Pacific. In the coming decade, Asia, and especially China and India are set to make significant inroads, but the US will still maintain the lion’s share. Any major developments in the US will in one way or another affect the industry in other regions.
Another factor affecting the growth of the dental industry is the age factor. The elderly population is increasing. These are people that are 65 years and older. Studies show that dental health depreciates with age, meaning that this population is presenting an opportunity to dental practitioners. But then again, the elderly income is depreciating as their dental health needs appreciate, thus posing a threat to the industry’s growth. It is a different case with the younger generation, most of whom do not have a lot of disposable income. Though they do not have a lot of dental concerns, they still are not able to afford the minimum dental check-up requirements.
Insurance and Government Expenditure
Insurance and government expenditure cover a particular portion of dental expenditure, but out-of-pocket payments from patients still hold a larger percentage of this expenditure at around 39%. If income levels are to increase around the world, then more people will have disposable incomes to visit dentists or buy high-end dental products. It is a wait and sees scenario, as not all regions’ economies are growing. Some are even depreciating. Nonetheless, there are industry players working hard to give dental care to low-income people. For instance, Alkass Dental has a patient loyalty program that is designed to offer affordable dental care to the uninsured. Try them out today!