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Dental markets need safety innovations to accelerate recovery: GlobalData

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The dental services and devices market has been adversely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic as aerosols released during dental treatments could transmit the virus from infected patients.

Commenting on the recent news that Dentsply Sirona reported a Q2 net sales decline of 51.4 per cent compared to Q2 2019 Dominic Tong, Medical Device Analyst at GlobalData, said,“The dental devices market has been hit especially hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. A vast majority of dental procedures are elective, which many countries have restricted during the pandemic. Fewer procedures means lower demand for dental consumables and less revenue for dentists to spend on new equipment, leading to large losses for market leaders such as Dentsply Sirona. Dental devices also don’t have the saving grace of being used in any part of the COVID-19 treatment pathway, further limiting sources of revenue.

“Even as restrictions on dental procedures are slowly lifted in many countries, the threat of a second wave remains. Additionally, dental procedures often generate aerosols, which are potential vectors for COVID-19 to spread. GlobalData expects that these factors will make patients hesitant to undergo dental procedures in the near future, while also increasing the risk dental clinicians face. Novel methods are needed to ensure safety for both the dental practitioner and patient.

“Recently, a multidisciplinary team at UIC found that replacing the water in dental drills with a diluted polymer solution would prevent aerosols being formed during their use. These polymer solutions are FDA-approved and over the counter, allowing dentists to limit one source of aerosols easily and cost-effectively. For the dental market to recover while keeping patients safe, additional solutions that incorporate ideas from multiple disciplines will be needed.”

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