Global Healthy Thinking Report

2021 Oral Health Awareness Survey

The largest worldwide consumer awareness oral health and dental care survey, commissioned to investigate globally the condition of teeth, knowledge of oral health, attitudes and preferences.

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(PDF, 4.2 MB)


Men and women





Countries surveyed

UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Netherlands, US, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Japan, China, Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia


Equal numbers of men and women aged 18 to 65 in countries across Europe, Asia and North and South America were asked for their views on oral health issues including their dental care routine. The answers provided by the 15,000 respondents to questions on dental habits paint a detailed and fascinating picture.

Countries surveyed

UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Netherlands, US, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Japan, China, Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia

We questioned consumers on

Condition of their teeth

How they describe their oral health

How they look after their teeth/bad habits

When they skip brushing their teeth

Where they go for advice on keeping teeth healthy

How people would like to improve their smile

What if any DIY dental treatments adults have attempted at home

How the pandemic has affected overall oral health

Whether they think their dental practice could help with other health checks

Whether their communication habits have changed in the pandemic

Key Findings

The results give an indepth picture of the state of much of the world’s oral health, our habits, concerns and desires — and show that we really do care about a healthy mouth.

Brushing teeth twice a day

63% of Britons brush teeth twice a day and have the highest figure globally for brushing with fluoride toothpaste, 47%.

Regularly visiting the Dentist

Germany scored the highest for regularly visiting the Dentist with 45% of people going twice a year.

The sweetest tooth and most fillings

Just 7% of Japanese avoid sugary snacks and drinks – the lowest worldwide and the Japanese also report the most fillings – over two-thirds had at least one filling and 20% had five or more.

Remembering to brush teeth

33% of Italians, Argentinians, Britons said they never forget to brush their teeth, followed by 32% of Spaniards.

Cleaning between teeth

52% of Brazilians clean between their teeth regularly, on the contrary, Indonesians are the worst at cleaning between their teeth at just 12%, followed by France, 16%.

Taking dental advice from a dentist

81% of Mexicans take dental advice from their dentist – the highest worldwide. Just 3% say they do not seek any dental advice.

If you could have one new dental treatment to improve your smile what would it be?

Tooth whitening was by far the most popular option worldwide if people were to choose one treatment to improve their smile – 47% of Italians, Mexicans and Spanish chose this, closely followed by 46% of Chinese.

Oral healthcare in the pandemic

Our survey discovered that the COVID-19 pandemic has had an effect on lifestyle and oral hygiene habits around the world.

Which countries are taking better care of their teeth since the pandemic?

45% of Indonesians are now cleaning their teeth more regularly since the pandemic.

Which countries have seen the worst oral health impact during the pandemic?

Argentinians have missed the most dental appointments — 44%

  • Japan has missed the least — 12%
  • France has missed the least within Europe — 21%

"Mask breath" is the most common in Thailand — 33%

  • It is the least common in the UK — 12%

25% of Americans have experienced more tooth sensitivity

  • Only 6% of people in Japan say the same

Only 11% of Thai respondents haven’t noticed changes

  • 47% of Japanese respondents say they haven’t noticed changes

1 in 10 Brits have fractured a tooth, and 1 in 3 have missed dental appointments

Download the full 53 page report to see the big picture of global oral health care in 2021


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