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Should I get my teeth fixed overseas?

Dental work can be a costly procedure for many; especially in first world countries. That’s why travelling abroad in search of more affordable options is becoming a popular trend for many patients in need of dental treatments.

Who wouldn’t want to kill two birds with one stone and escape on an adventure to an exotic destination such as Thailand, the Philippines, Mexico, Costa Rica or even India? Not only would your blissful holiday be paid for, but so would your extensive dental work – all for the same price as having the same equivalent procedure completed in Australia.

It’s no wonder a dental treatment package coupled with attractive accommodation options in island resorts for a dreamy and affordable holiday-style recovery is becoming highly sought after. It all sounds so enticing when you’re only focusing on the financial cost and not the risks involved.

Dangers of overseas dental treatment
Australian dentists frequently warn patients of the risks involved when getting dental work performed overseas. This is not because they are competing against overseas clinics that offer significant savings; it’s because cheap treatments can be very risky
[1].

Infection and disease – Overseas clinics are less likely to adhere to Australia’s strict hygiene and equipment maintenance laws, which increases the chance of patients contracting a disease or infection[2].

Legitimacy – Many overseas clinics will convincingly claim on their websites that their dentists received their tertiary qualifications from a first world country, but this is hard to confirm.

Additional costs – If complications occur during or post-treatment, patients run the risk of having to pay even more and costs quickly add up. It may not be feasible to go back and see the dentist who initially performed your procedures, should complications arise.

Quality materials – Using cheap materials – such as metals other than titanium in implants – is one of the top cost-cutting methods for dentists to save money and offer competitive treatment prices. So are you getting quality work done that’s going to last the distance?

Legal protection – If you are not satisfied with your dental work or have been ripped off, there may be fewer watchdogs and legal support available in third world countries that you can turn to[3].

Overall, if you’re still convinced that receiving dental work overseas is the best option for you, ensure you do your research first. Consider speaking with your Australian dentist before taking off so they know exactly what treatment you will get upon returning to their dental care back home. Also bring back all X-rays and reports.

References:

Horowitz, Michael D., Jeffrey A. Rosensweig, and Christopher A. Jones. “Medical tourism: globalization of the healthcare marketplace.” Medscape General Medicine 9, no. 4 (2007): 33.


[1] Horowitz, Michael D., Jeffrey A. Rosensweig, and Christopher A. Jones. “Medical tourism: globalization of the healthcare marketplace.” Medscape General Medicine 9, no. 4 (2007): 33.

[2] Horowitz, Michael D., Jeffrey A. Rosensweig, and Christopher A. Jones. “Medical tourism: globalization of the healthcare marketplace.” Medscape General Medicine 9, no. 4 (2007): 33.

[3] Horowitz, Michael D., Jeffrey A. Rosensweig, and Christopher A. Jones. “Medical tourism: globalization of the healthcare marketplace.” Medscape General Medicine 9, no. 4 (2007): 33.

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