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Oral Health

Latest Data

Explore the latest data and disparities for each indicator.

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Where We Are and Where We’re Going

From 2007 to 2015, there was no significant change in the percentage of persons aged 2 years and over who had a dental visit in the past 12 months (44.5% in 2007 and 43.4% in 2015, age adjusted). In 2015, several groups in selected demographic categories had the highest rate of a dental visit in the past 12 months, including females, the white non-Hispanic population, persons aged 2–17 years, those with at least some college education, those with family incomes 400% of the poverty threshold or above, and persons with private health insurance.

Annual dental visits (OH-7)

  • Healthy People 2020 objective OH-7 tracks the proportion of persons aged 2 years and over who had a dental visit in the past 12 months.
    • HP2020 Baseline: 44.5% of persons aged 2 years and over had a dental visit in the past 12 months in 2007 (age adjusted to the year 2000 standard population).
    • HP2020 Target: 49.0% of persons aged 2 years and over (age adjusted to the year 2000 standard population), a 10% improvement over the baseline.
    • Most Recent: In 2015, 43.4% of persons aged 2 years and over had a dental visit in the past 12 months.
  • In 2015, females aged 2 years and over had a 14.9% higher rate of a dental visit in the past 12 months than males (46.4% versus 40.4%, age adjusted).
  • Persons aged 2–17 years had the highest rate of a dental visit in the past 12 months, 54.5%, among broad age groups in 2015. Rates for other age groups were:
    • 35.0% among persons aged 18–44 years; the best group rate was 55.8% higher
    • 45.1% among persons aged 45–64 years; the best group rate was 20.9% higher
    • 46.3% among persons aged 65 years and over; the best group rate was 17.8% higher
  • Among education groups for persons aged 25 years and over, those with at least some college education had the highest rate of a dental visit in the past 12 months, 57.7% (age adjusted) in 2015. Rates (age adjusted) for other education groups were:
    • 19.2% among those with less than a high school education; the best group rate was 3 times higher
    • 34.1% among those with a high school education or GED; the best group rate was 69.4% higher

Persons with a Dental Visit by Education, 2015
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Data source: Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS), AHRQ.

  • Among income groups, those aged 2 years and over with family incomes 400% of the poverty threshold or above had the highest rate of a dental visit in the past 12 months, 55.4% (age adjusted) in 2015. Rates (age adjusted) for other income groups were:
    • 27.5% among those with family incomes below the poverty threshold; the best group rate was twice as high
    • 32.0% among those with family incomes between 100% and 199% of the poverty threshold; the best group rate was 72.7% higher
    • 40.3% among those with family incomes between 200% and 399% of the poverty threshold; the best group rate was 37.4% higher

Persons with a Dental Visit by Family Income, 2015
Web Graphic 1.png

Data source: Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS), AHRQ.

  • Among racial and ethnic groups, the white non-Hispanic population aged 2 years and over had the highest rate of a dental visit in the past 12 months, 49.1% (age adjusted) in 2015. Rates (age adjusted) for other racial and ethnic groups were:
    • 30.7% among the black non-Hispanic population (lowest rate); the best group rate was 60.2% higher
    • 32.9% among the Hispanic population; the best group rate was 49.3% higher
    • 37.2% among the American Indian or Alaska Native population; the best group rate was 32.1% higher
    • 38.0% among persons who identified with 2 or more races; the best group rate was 29.2% higher
    • 43.2% among the Asian population; the best group rate was 13.6% higher
  • Among activity limitation status groups, people without activity limitations aged 2 years and over had a 16.3% higher rate of a dental visit in the past 12 months than those with activity limitations (45.0% versus 38.7%, age adjusted) in 2015.
  • Among health insurance status groups, persons aged 2–64 years with private health insurance had the highest rate of a dental visit in the past 12 months, 49.5% (age adjusted) in 2015. Rates (age adjusted) for other health insurance status groups were:
    • 17.4% among the uninsured; the best group rate was more than 2.5 times as high
    • 32.0% among those with public health insurance; the best group rate was 54.7% higher
  • Among marital status groups, persons aged 18 years and over who were married had the highest rate of a dental visit in the past 12 months, 43.9% (age adjusted) in 2015. Rates (age adjusted) for other marital status groups were:
    • 33.8% among those who were widowed; not significantly different than the best group rate
    • 34.3% among those who were divorced or separated; the best group rate was 28.2% higher
    • 36.1% among those who were never married; the best group rate was 21.6% higher
  • Persons aged 20 years and over who were not obese had an 11.5% higher rate of a dental visit in the past 12 months than those who were obese (41.4% versus 37.2%, age adjusted) in 2015.

Notes:

  • Some, but not all, health insurance plans include dental coverage.
  • All disparities described are statistically significant at the 0.05 level of significance.
  • Unrounded values with additional decimal places beyond what are shown here are used in calculating health disparities, including identifying the best group and calculating the differences between groups. Rounded values displayed here are used in calculating changes over time and percent change needed to meet the target.
  • Data (except those by educational attainment, health insurance coverage, obesity status, and age group) are adjusted to the 2000 standard population using the age groups 2–17, 18–44, 45–54, 55–64, 65–74, and 75 years and over. Data by educational attainment are adjusted using the age groups 25–34, 35–44, 45–64, 65–74, and 75 years and over. Data by health insurance coverage are adjusted using the age groups 2–17, 18–44, 45–54, and 55–64. Data by obesity status are adjusted using the age groups 20–39, 40–59, and 60 years and over. Data by age group are not age adjusted. Age-adjusted rates are weighted sums of age-specific rates.
  • The terms “Hispanic or Latino” and “Hispanic” are used interchangeably in this report.
  • Data for this measure are available annually and come from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS), AHRQ.

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