Fast Facts: Tooth Loss

At a glance

Review facts and data about tooth loss in the United States.

Fast facts

  • Severe tooth loss—having 8 or fewer teeth—impacts the ability to eat meats, fruits, and vegetables, and presents yet another challenge to having a healthy diet.1
  • One quarter (26%) of adults aged 65 or older have 8 or fewer teeth.2
  • About 1 in 6 (17%) adults aged 65 or older have lost all of their teeth.3
  • Total tooth loss among adults aged 65 or older decreased by more than 30% from 27% in 1999–2004 to 17% in 2011–2016.3
  • Older adults who are poor, have less than a high school education, or are current cigarette smokers are more than 3 times as likely to have lost all their teeth as comparison groups.3
  1. Nowjack-Raymer RE, Sheiham A. Association of edentulism and diet and nutrition in US Adults. J Dent Res. 2003; 82(2):123–126.
  2. Griffin SO, Griffin PM, Li C-H, Bailey WD, Brunson D, Jones JA. Changes in older adults' oral health and disparities: 1999 to 2004 and 2011 to 2016. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2019;67(6):1152–1157. DOI:
  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Oral Health Surveillance Report: Trends in Dental Caries and Sealants, Tooth Retention, and Edentulism, United States, 1999–2004 to 2011–2016. US Dept of Health and Human Services; 2019.