I, too, think the reopening of dentistry may be a bellwether for the reopening of much of America. But, unlike the New York Times, I don't see decreased consumer demand as only a study of higher unemployment producing lower numbers of individuals with dental coverage.
Two thirds of all Medicare beneficiaries have no dental coverage. AHRQ tells us (as of their 2010 survey): "[d"ental expenditures are distinguished from overall health care expenditures in the distribution by sources of payment. In 2010, a higher percentage of dental expenditures was paid out of pocket (47.5 percent for dental versus 14.2 percent overall) and a lower percentage was paid by Medicaid (5.8 percent versus 10.4 percent)."
Dental expenditures in the United States are a middle class luxury. Let them be a bellwether of that category of consumption.