2021 The Year in Numbers

Dental Products Report, Dental Products Report December 2021, Volume 55, Issue 12

A look at some significant and interesting numbers and statistics from around the dental industry in 2021.

170 new products debuted in the previous 12 issues of Dental Products Report®

69% of dental practices say the prevalence of bruxism among patients has increased since before the COVID-19 pandemic. Other stress-related conditions such as chipped and cracked teeth (increased at 63% of practices) and TMD symptoms (increased at 60% of practices) are also up compared with prepandemic norms.1

About 80,000 toothbrushes were used to create Fastminar, a 45-foot-tall statue of a tooth at Terna Dental College in Navi Mumbai, India, which received a Guinness World Records title as the largest toothbrush sculpture of a body part (supported). The toothbrushes used in the statue were donated by 8890 dentists throughout India. Source: Guinness World Records

62% of dental practices were more interested in aerosol mitigation solutions because of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Source: Dental Products Report® 2021 Technology Census

25,995 predoctoral students were enrolled in US dental schools for the 2020-2021 school year, the largest number during any single school year. 2

94% of enrollees (16.6 million individuals) in Medicare Advantage individual plans chose a plan with at least some dental coverage. However, this number reflects only Medicare beneficiaries who have chosen to enroll in voluntary Medicare Advantage plans. Forty-seven percent of Medicare beneficiaries do not have any dental coverage.3

348+ new practices joined the largest dental support organization (DSO) in the US, Heartland Dental, in 2021. With this expansion, the DSO is now affiliated with more than 2300 doctors at more than 1400 practices in 38 states. Source: Heartland Dental

39% of dental practices reduced their materials purchases because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and 34% of practices expressed increased interest in products offering simplified workflows because of the impact of the pandemic. Source: Dental Products Report® 2021 Materials Survey.


  1. Health Policy Institute, “COVID-19: Economic Impact on Dental Practices, Week of October 11 QOW Results” https://surveys.ada.org/reports/RC/public/YWRhc3VydmV5cy02MTY4OGNkZjRkMGNmZTAwMTc0Y2MzOTQtVVJfM3BaeGhzWm12TnNMdjB4 accessed 10/27/2021
  2. Health Policy Institute “2020-2021 Survey of Dental Education” https://www.ada.org/~/media/ADA/Science%20and%20Research/HPI/Files/SDE1_2020-21_final.xlsx accessed 10/27/2021
  3. Freed M, et al. “Medicare and Dental Coverage: A Closer Look” KFF. https://www.kff.org/medicare/issue-brief/medicare-and-dental-coverage-a-closer-look/ accessed 10/27/2021.