Are we unconsciously conditioned to believe that the dentists in our « developed » countries are the most reliable and the most worthy in the world?
Does this deep habit only serve the interests of our dentists in order to exploit us with extremely high prices?
To also operate insurance companies and increase our premiums?
To scare us with their warning about dental care abroad which they believe is not worth it and is too risky, because the quality of care is not similar.
However, how did they know what was going on elsewhere without having set foot in dental offices in foreign countries? Are they lying to us? These professionals who were said to be trustworthy? Is their truth rather the fear of losing a lot of money, whatever the interests of their client, you, me?
The good news is that it is worth it to go abroad for your dental treatment, as there are highly competent dentists who welcome you to several reputable destinations such as Costa Rica, Hungary, Mexico and now Colombia, just to name a few.
What attracts people to want dental care abroad?
Some 800,000 Americans have gone abroad for dental treatment, while more than 6 million patients worldwide have traveled for dental treatment.
Dental tourism attracts many people who do not have health insurance or who have insufficient dental coverage. Although there are exceptional dentists around the world, but you need to do your homework to make sure you don’t fall into a tourist trap.
Low prices do not necessarily mean lower quality, although there is no guarantee that work done abroad will meet accepted standards of care. In addition, discounted offers should not be considered if they are not supported by proof of competence and warranties.
Most people who seek dental care outside their national borders have only one idea in mind: Money.
In North America, Europe and most developed countries, dental care is expensive, especially if major reconstruction or cosmetic work is required.
Even in the most socially advanced countries, only the most rudimentary dental care is covered by health insurance plans. In the United States, for example, more than 150 million people have no dental coverage. With increasing demands on healthcare infrastructure and costs, patients around the world can expect to pay for large-scale dental care themselves.
Are dental vacation packages reliable and advantageous?
With technological advances spreading rapidly around the world, developing countries are beginning to provide dental care at significantly lower costs. While a growing number of people are looking for cheaper dental care abroad, they are also attracted by the possibility of combining treatments with annual vacations.
Low price, inferior quality?
There are many motivations for people wanting dental care abroad, including saving costs and being transparent or honest about prices.
The desire to save money while benefiting from high quality dental care is the main motivation for dental tourism. Lower prices are offered in developing countries for a number of reasons, including education expenses, insurance rates, overhead, labor cost, smaller margins of profit on materials and government interventions. In reality, low prices do not necessarily mean lower quality.
For example, Colombia is ranked 22nd on the World Health Organization’s list of countries providing the best health care. Canada is 19th, the USA is 37th.
As mentioned, even taking into account the associated travel costs, the final bill is often less expensive than going to the local dentist, especially for people without any insurance who have to pay out of their own pocket.
Prices are usually quoted for dental care abroad, so people can know exactly how much to budget for. Meanwhile, in dental clinics in developed countries, the final price is not guaranteed and may vary depending on the unexpected.
Risks of dental tourism to consider
Foreign dentists do not need to comply with the same standards in force in UK, Canada, United States, etc. As a result, they may not have the same strict hygiene guidelines or the same level of training. They may also not be able to communicate well in the same language as you.
In addition, complications resulting from procedures performed abroad can be much more expensive to settle when you return.
And if you receive substandard dental care abroad, it is almost impossible to go to court in the event of professional misconduct.
If dental tourism still seems to you a promising option, I strongly suggest that you read my article concerning my evaluation process during my dental treatments in Colombia.