Nearly three quarters of adults in the U.S. said the pandemic made them more conscious of their health in general.

In recognition of World Oral Health Day, Delta Dental published new survey findings on U.S. adults’ oral health behaviors, including their awareness of good oral health in the pandemic and making dental care a priority this year.

The survey found that nearly all adults in the United States plan to prioritize dental care in 2022, with 94% saying they will visit the dentist this year.

About 3 in 4 adults in the U.S. credited the pandemic with making them more conscious of their health in general. Almost 9 in 10 (86%) agreed that maintaining their oral health was essential to protecting their overall health throughout the pandemic.

Despite their reported good oral health practices, more adults said they faced dental issues compared to findings from last year.

Cavities were the most common issue at 86%, up 6% from the previous survey. The majority of adults also had to overcome pain or toothache (74%) and teeth sensitivity (67%) with increases of 7% and 6%, respectively.

The 2022 Delta Dental Oral Health and Wellness Survey was conducted between January 19 and January 28, 2022, among a nationally representative sample of over 1,000 U.S. residents ages 18 and up.

“The health of our bodies is not independent of the health of our mouths. We have a clearer understanding of the significant impact our oral health has on our overall health. As we elevate our awareness of the fundamental role of good oral health, we can better appreciate the value in making dental care a priority in our daily routines,” said Joseph Dill, DDS, MBA, vice president of Dental Science, Delta Dental Plans Association. “In our annual Oral Health and Wellness Survey, it’s encouraging to find that most adults plan to prioritize their oral health this year.”

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