There are nearly 2 million dental clinics in India with 25,000 more dentists graduating and adding to this ever growing list every year. Conversely, the Indian dental services market only has a penetration of 2% and is growing at a rather sluggish pace.
This lag in the growth rate of service providers and a lack of commensurate growth in demand is creating problems in the Indian dental sector. This oversupply leads to lower prices and unused capacity which can eventually become a major cause of inflation in processing costs, leading to further reduction in services.
Do dental seats need to be reduced? The results of the market research actually point in a completely different direction. According to the Indian Dental Association In India, 98% of people have dental problems and 60% of parents are unaware of their children’s dental problems. And all this while the penetration of dental services is only 2%.
! The reason Indian people suffer from dental complications is their ignorance of the importance of preventive oral care and timely treatment of small dental problems.
In addition to this, the majority of people avoid or delay seeking assistance from dental practitioners for fear of exorbitant fees, which adds to the misery. However, one point in time saves nine. Consider this, a cavity can be easily filled for Rs. 500 or less, but if left untreated that same cavity may require root canal treatment. The cost of performing an RCT is over Rs. 5000 depending on the complexity.
Even then, the misinformation regarding the causes and the treatment is the reason why root canal treatment is becoming the mainstay of dentistry today. Almost 67% of all treatments involve root canal treatment. There is also a misconception that people think the dental problem will take care of itself. A fever, cough, or cold in most cases will heal on their own, but not this cavity, gum problem, or decayed teeth. For this, sooner or later it will be necessary to go to a dentist. And the earlier is certainly the better in this case.
Gum disease is most prevalent in a developing country like ours due to popular ignorance and non-standardized treatment costs. Losing teeth or having extractions seems easier for people than a half-yearly consultation and cleaning that helps prevent tooth loss. Extensive treatments such as braces, RCTs, dental implants, dental sealants, etc., are not even considered by the majority for fear of a gash on the pocket.
Dental insurance: the gamechanger
Dental insurance can change more than just the economics of the problem, it can take the nation’s combined oral health to another level. Even though some organizations are partially addressing this problem, it is high time people looked at more structural issues such as financial offsets for treatment costs.
General oral health will improve positively with more people coming for preventive care. It is obvious that financial aid will kill the postponement of these urgent treatments that are needed today.
To put it more bluntly, the overall increase in insurance plan subscriptions will reduce concerns about affordability when it comes to oral well-being, adding a significant number of people seeking dental care every day. year. The above may help India to rank among countries like the United States, which has 77% dental penetration.
The opinions expressed above are those of the author.
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