Survey IDs best U.S. markets for dental services

The proportion of adults who visited a dentist in the past 12 months in 15 major U.S. cities ranged from a high of 65% in Raleigh, NC, to a low of 46% in Miami, according to a new survey from DentalTrends.

The survey, conducted in October 2012, focused on dental practice visits using a nationwide sample of 6,000 U.S. adults. Among other questions, the survey asked respondents whether they had visited a dental professional in the past 12 months.

The results of this nationwide survey were combined with DentalTrends' proprietary geographic information system (GIS), which provides detailed oral healthcare and dental statistics for every U.S. census block, ZIP code, and more than 500 key metropolitan areas.

For the purpose of this research update, dental visits among the adult population refers to the proportion and the population of adults (age 18 or older) who have visited a dental practice in the past 12 months regardless of the location of the practice visited, DentalTrends noted. The survey focused on 15 U.S. cities in different states with a total adult population between 262,416 (Wichita, KS) and 506,073 (Boston).

Based on DentalTrends' research methodology, here is how each state fared in terms of the proportion of adults who visited a dentist in the past 12 months:

  • Raleigh, NC: 64.8%
  • Virginia Beach, VA: 62.2%
  • Portland, OR: 61.6%
  • Minneapolis, MN: 60.6%
  • Arlington, TX: 59.9%
  • Boston, MA: 59.8%
  • Mesa, AZ: 59.4%
  • Denver, CO: 58.8%
  • Kansas City, MO: 57.4%
  • Wichita, KS: 57.1%
  • Oklahoma City, OK: 56.2%
  • Sacramento, CA: 54.3%
  • Milwaukee, WI: 50.8%
  • Baltimore, MD: 49.8%
  • Miami, FL: 46.0%

And here is the adult population that visited a dentist in the past 12 months:

  • Boston, MA: 302,439
  • Portland, OR: 286,922
  • Denver, CO: 285,064
  • Oklahoma City, OK: 244,399
  • Baltimore, MD: 243,004
  • Milwaukee, WI: 222,323
  • Kansas City, MO: 205,432
  • Mesa, AZ: 204,859
  • Virginia Beach, VA: 204,147
  • Sacramento, CA: 197,742
  • Minneapolis, MN: 191,772
  • Raleigh, NC: 182,322
  • Arlington, TX: 167,435
  • Wichita, KS: 149,753
  • Miami, FL: 144,228

Considering the size of the adult population and the amount spent by patients on dental services (self-reported) in each of these 15 cities, DentalTrends estimates that Boston currently represents the largest market for dental services ($153 million/year), followed by Portland, OR ($145 million/year), and Denver ($144 million/year). Miami ($73 million/year) and Wichita, KS ($76 million/year), are estimated to be the smallest markets for dental services among the 15 cities, according to DentalTrends.

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