Malocclusion is the misalignment of teeth. Malocclusion is most often hereditary, but it can also occur due to other reasons i.e. childhood habits such as thumb sucking, use of pacifier beyond the age of 3, and others along with extra teeth or lost teeth, ill-fitting dental fillings, and jaw tumors. There are three major classes of malocclusion i.e. Class 1, Class 2, and Class 3. Treatment for malocclusion depends upon the severity of the condition. Treatment of malocclusion generally includes removal of teeth to correct overcrowding, braces to correct the position of the teeth, wires or plates to stabilize the jaw bone, reshaping, bonding, or capping of teeth, and surgery to reshape or shorten the jaw. However, the available treatment options may also result in some complications such as difficulty in chewing or speaking, tooth decay, pain or discomfort, and others.
While rising prevalence of malocclusion is driving the market, what factors are posing a major challenge to it?
Globally this market has seen a significant rise due to the prevalence of malocclusion, and other related dental and oral diseases. As with the rising incidence of malocclusion, the need for preventive orthodontic treatment is extremely desired. Serious malocclusion can cause both psychological and physiological conditions. Thus, it is important to prevent this condition at early stages. According to a study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health in 2017, it is found that prevalence of malocclusion in Shanghai was 83.9%. It is also reported that the prevalence of deep overbite was highest in children with malocclusion i.e. 63.7%. Cosmetic dentistry has also attracted a great deal of attention. Dental procedures are now not just restricted to the repairing or treating of dental diseases, another niche market in the dental industry is the cosmetic dentistry market, which is growing at a steady rate due to the reasons concerned with enhancing of the overall facial beauty among the masses and increased disposable incomes.
However, despite all these driving factors, lack of technological awareness is expected to hinder the growth of the market. This lack of technological awareness is mainly attributed to the slow adoption rate of new technology by the dentists. Such instances mainly occur in cases of older generation dentists who do not want to adopt new technologies.
Established Players in Global Malocclusion Market Focus on Effective Treatment Options to Bolster their Positions
A number of players are operating in the global malocclusion market. Dentsply Sirona has been recognized as a global leader with a broad range of products. DENTSPLY SIRONA Inc. designs, develops, manufactures, and markets various dental and oral health products, and other consumable healthcare products primarily for the professional dental market worldwide. It operates in two segments, Dental and Healthcare Consumables; and Technologies. The company has a history of acquiring market share by signing up for partnerships and collaboration with other players. For instance, on September 26, 2017, the company has acquired gutta-percha material technologies from Healthdent Technologies International.
Align Technology, Inc is another well-established player in the malocclusion market. The company provides digital services used in dentistry, dental records storage, and orthodontics. The company operates in two major segments i.e. Clear Aligner, and Scanners and Services. On November 17, 2017, Align Technology, Inc. entered an agreement with Glidewell Dental to distribute the iTero Element intraoral scanning system in North America with the newly unveiled glidewell.io In-Office Solution, and in the same year, Align Technology, Inc. acquired G.L. Dental Couture Limited to get direct access to customers and distribution partners across markets in Russia, Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), Baltics, Turkey, Monaco, Israel, Cyprus, the Middle East and Africa.
Some other major players operating in the global malocclusion market are American Orthodontics, Rocky Mountain Orthodontics, TP Orthodontics, Inc., Adenta GmbH, and G&H Orthodontics.
Improvement in Reimbursement Policies Stoking Growth of the Malocclusion Market
The rising burden of malocclusion and related complications are triggering various government or private associations to amend and improve their reimbursement policies. According to the orthodontic services billing guide suggested by the Washington State Healthcare Authority, orthodontic treatment and orthodontic-related services coverage are provided for severe malocclusions cases. It is also reported that only patients with age 20 and younger can avail coverage for such services. The American Dental Association has suggested that in the United States, Maryland, Utah, Arkansas, and Massachusetts have the highest Medicaid FFS reimbursement rates i.e. 79.3%, 75.3%, 75.2%, and 74.1% respectively, whereas, Wisconsin, California, Washington, Maine, and Iowa have the lowest coverage relative to private dental insurance reimbursement rates.