Global-, Regional-, and Country-Level Economic Impacts of Dental Diseases in 2015

This study analysed global costs due to oral diseases in 2015. It included both direct costs, measured as dental expenditures costs, and indirect costs, measured as productivity losses. On a global base, the total cost was shown to be $544.41 billion, where direct costs accounted for $356.80 billion and indirect costs for $187.61 billion.

Dental professionals
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Broken down on a regional level, high-income North America and Western Europe together accounted for 65% of the direct costs of worldwide expenditures. On a country level, the United States topped the list, followed by China and Germany. Seen from a per capita perspective, Iceland was on top. Indirect costs were the highest in Western Europe, High-Income North America and High-Income Asia Pacific, mainly due to tooth loss. Globally, severe tooth loss, severe periodontitis and untreated caries, in that order, impacted productivity loss the most.

Some of the variations between countries can be explained by different approaches in dental care and management of the diseases, since the analysis doesn’t distinguish between preventive interventions, treatment, or specific types of dental care.

In conclusion, a more high-quality, harmonising reporting on oral health, dental care and associated impacts on individuals’ well-being, that also include economic aspects, is needed to enable for policy and health care decision-makers to realise the need of addressing oral diseases.

A summary of a scientific article

This summary of a scientific study by Righolt AJ et al. is presented by Anna Nilvéus Olofsson, DDS, Manager Odontology and Scientific Affairs. Click here for more information.