Updated: Apr 21
Unlike a lot of diseases, dental diseases are often overlooked by many people because they often are less urgent and do not impede a patients' daily life that much as other prevalent diseases. However, oral health is of great importance, since the teeth are the few bones that cannot self-regenerate or repair. Research also shows that gingivitis and periodontitis are two of the most prevalent causes of gum decay and tooth loss among adults.
In order to prevent the onset of these diseases, one of the most efficient ways is to use dental floss to maintain oral hygiene. Through physical friction force, the thread of dental floss can loosen the bacterial plaque and food debris adhere on the teeth so that particles can be easily cleaned. According to Technavio, globally, there is an increasing trend in the dental floss market: the overall revenue is projected to reach 4,169.18 million USD with a CAGR 5.02% by end of 2021 (see figure below). Such increase can be ascribed to two major reasons: the growing awareness of oral health & preventive oral health measures, as well as dentists’ recommendations and prescriptions.
Global Dental Floss Market
Material-wise, three primary ingredients are utilized to manufacture dental floss: the generic floss uses nylon, and the resulting product is multifilament floss; another material that can also be used to make the multifilament floss is silk; polytetrafluoroethylene (PTEE) is commonly used to make the monofilament floss.
Type-wise, the dental floss market can be categorized into three types: waxed, unwaxed, and others. The first two are the traditional thread-type floss that consumers are most likely to see on the market. Despite their difference brought by the wax coating, they are generically the same. The “others” include three major products: battery-powered equipment, which oftentimes comes with the automatic cleaning process; floss pick, which has a similar operation to the toothbrush; and dental tape, which can have a larger spatial coverage and higher flexibility.
Overall, the market is dominated by the waxed dental floss, with a market share of around 60% (see figure below). As mentioned above, since there is no technical difference between waxed and unwaxed types, the market dominance of waxed dental floss almost solely comes from consumer preference.
Global Market Share by Product Type
When it comes to the geographical landscape of the global dental floss market, America is currently the market leader, but the APAC area, being the fastest growing segment on the global market, will have a thriving market share in a few years due to the increasing awareness of the oral health importance and growing prevalence of the dental health education. Based on Mordor Intelligence’s research, the Asia-Pacific oral care market is forecasted to have a CAGR of 8.05% from 2016 to 2026, much faster than the U.S. (5.15%) during that period.
And among the APAC area, China and India will be the most lucrative markets since first, people will start to change their lifestyle as the economic growth enables them to earn more income. Secondly, these two countries have a substantial population, which means a huge potential user base in the future. Finally, global trade enables a robust supply chain that helps to ensure access and affordability.
With consideration of all this existing data, the preventive dental health measures market is worth looking at in China. Its dental floss market has a great number of drivers to support the market growth. One of the factors mentioned above is the growing awareness and popularity of preventive health measures. Also, the high prevalence of periodontal disease indicates a vast unmet need in several areas. The global pandemic only made this problem more acute since people tend to consume more snacks and sweet food for comfort when they are anxious or depressed. The third reason is the rapidly aging population in China due to the one-child policy as periodontal disease skews toward an aging population.
All in all, analysts from Bridge Point Capital remain bullish on the global oral hygiene market, especially in the APAC area. The recent data trends reveals a huge growth potential and investors should keep a close eye on it.
Bridge Point Capital is a private equity firm based in New York, with a focus on U.S.-Asia cross-border investments. We specialize in investing in disruptive mid- to late-stage healthcare companies that can benefit from penetrating the vast, yet unexplored Asian healthcare market. We aim to leverage our expertise in both healthcare and capital markets, to establish a lucrative investment platform for our investors.