GSK Consumer Healthcare research shows patient fear has grown over Covid-19 transmission in dental practices


  Posted by: Dental Design      23rd March 2021

New research from GSK Consumer Healthcare, in partnership with IPSOS, has revealed changing attitudes towards dentistry within the UK, as more British people than in any other European country have stopped visiting the dentist as a result of the pandemic. While 64% of Europeans plan to visit a dentist in the next six months, nearly half of Brits are somewhat to extremely worried about visiting in person amid concerns of catching Covid-19.

British consumers have been put off more from visiting a dentist in person during the last year than any other European nation, with 43% of Brits visiting a dentist less often. 18% of British consumers have no plans to visit a dentist over the next six months, due to fears of contracting the virus from dental equipment or from others in the waiting room.

In addition to the reluctance to visit the dentist, consumers are also wavering in their own oral self-care routines. Despite the increased consumption of snacks amongst Brits during the pandemic by 30%, only 9% of British people have improved their oral healthcare routines by brushing their teeth more frequently.

In response to new statistics, GSK Consumer Healthcare is continuing its support for the dentistry community and advising dental practitioners to visit the GSK Health Partner site. Dentists can access resources and information to help reassure consumers of the safety precautions they are putting in place to create a safe and clean environment.

Jonathan Workman, area general manager for Great Britain and Ireland at GSK Consumer Healthcare, comments: “We know just how important good oral healthcare is to the wellbeing of consumers, as well as the longer-term negative impact that avoiding regular visits to the dentists can have. Despite the many Covid-safe environments that dentists are creating, we also recognise that there are still some concerns amongst people in the UK regarding visiting a dentist.

“As one of the world’s largest providers of specialist oral health, it’s our responsibility to reassure consumers of the great work that dentists have done to keep their practices safe and open. It’s our role to help consumers understand the necessity and benefits of regularly visiting the dentist, as part of a holistic self-care routine. With our support, we hope dentists can continue to play a crucial role in maintaining British consumer’s oral healthcare practices.

Comprehensive resources for clinicians are available via

About the survey

In total, 4,500 people were surveyed from five European countries and (France, Germany, Great Britain, Spain and Russia) and four South-East Asian countries (Indonesia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand). 500 people over the age of 18 years old were surveyed in each country. The survey was conducted online between 17th and 26th February 2021, and it focused on change of behaviour before and after the COVID-19 outbreak began. The data was mapped proportionally against metadata – age, sex, region – in the total population. In addition, all participants whose data was taken into account agreed to an Adverse Event Tracker (forwarding to manufacturers in anonymised form any problems with products).

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