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The market exhibiting the fastest growth is the direct restorative market within the European dental materials market. This phenomenon stems from the surging growth demonstrated within the subsegment for composite material at the expense of that of amalgam.

Reasons for the Amalgam Phase Down in Europe

There has been considerable controversy surrounding the health risks and environmental concerns regarding the use of amalgam containing mercury. As policies continue to be put into place to aid the phase down of amalgam, the composite material market is expected to acquire the subsequent amalgam market loss. The amalgam market is expected to exhibit double digit declines through to 2020 in Europe.

The overall composition of the direct restorative material market has been shifting significantly. The sub-segments of the direct restorative market are experiencing clashing market forces: composites are expanding at a fast pace, while amalgam is losing its market share rapidly and GI/RMGI materials are exhibiting moderate levels of growth. Recent trends which emphasize dental aesthetics and move away from environmental and health hazards have led to the reduced usage of amalgam. Amalgam and composites are considered substitutes, so the contraction of one market is being reflected as the expansion of the other. These factors contributed to the increasing popularity of composites, notwithstanding higher prices and lack of durability when compared to amalgam. These trends will dictate the future of the direct restorative material market over the next decade as significant expansion is projected through 2020.

Amalgam Usage Throughout Europe

  • Amalgam market for France and UK is the largest in Europe, where fewer policies and measures have been put into place to restrict its use.
  • Sole surviving amalgam market in Benelux strictly exists in Belgium.
  • Germany has taken serious efforts to lower amalgam use. Eastern Germany  incorporates more dental amalgam in dental restorations relative to Western Germany.
  • Denmark, Sweden and Norway, Finland and the Netherlands have banned dental amalgam. Switzerland and Italy’s use has been steeply decreasing over the years and is nearing a complete phase out.

The Growth of Composite Direct Restorative Material Forecast to 2020

  • In Scandinavia, nearly 90% of restorations are completed with composite materials alone.
  •  Benelux maintains a restorative market composed of 80% composite fillings

Amalgam phase down in Europe