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Dental Tourism: What You Should Know Before You Go - Rick's Travel and Biographies

Dental Tourism: What You Should Know Before You Go


Traveling abroad to get better prices on dental work is known as dental tourism and there’s no shortage of options available.

Practicing Good Oral Hygiene

Dental health insurance plans only cover basic procedures in the United States which explains why so many Americans go without it. However,it’s important to practice good oral hygiene,including water flossing, to prevent major dental issues from developing in the first place.Find reviews of water flossers at to select the right one for you.

Why Many Consider Dental Tourism

Even with your best efforts, dental issues can still arise.Crowns,dentures,implants, and root canals cost considerably less overseas than they do in the United States. In fact,medical publisher Patients Beyond Borders states that you can save more than 70 percent on dental procedures abroad. But saving money is just one factor to consider.

Check Your Dentist’s Credentials

It’s natural to feel apprehensive about visiting a dentist overseas. First, learn the basics of dental procedures and then start your dentist search online. A competent dentist should be U.S. Board certified and have adequate client reviews or patient referrals readily available for you to read. You can also check his or her credentials, proof of competence and level of experience via the International Federation of Esthetic Dentistry.

Discuss Procedures and Options

Discuss all of the procedures and options available as well as the total cost of your exam, x-rays,and treatment stages with your dentist. Certain materials used by an overseas dentist are not always approved by the FDA. Details about the procedure and the materials used (e.g., model type, model size, brand) should be done documented as a precautionary measure if your local dentist needs to provide care in the event of an emergency.

Ensure Your Procedure is Done in a Sterile Environment

There are standard hygienic practices that must be followed to ensure your safety. Dental instruments should come from a sterile packet, and your dentist and any assistants should wear a mask and gloves while working on you. If you have a transplanted organ, heart disease, or renal failure, discuss your history with your dentist prior to the procedure. Patients with these illnesses need to be given antibiotics to prevent the occurrence and spread of infections.

Include Time and Expenses for Your Recovery and Follow-Up Care

Plan your dental tour budget for visas, air travel, food, and lodging, visas if applicable. The earlier you schedule your dental appointment,the better. Certain procedures (e.g., extensive tooth restoration) could require a lengthy recovery time. Moreover, electing to receive additional dental work,going to follow-up visits, and processing done away from your dentist’s office could delay your return home further. Although some clinics abroad will repair dental work for free or at a reduced cost, traveling overseas for dental care may cost more money than anticipated.

Learn Your Rights in Another Country

Patients’ rights and lawsuit options differ from country to country. Never undergo a dental procedure without first learning your rights as a patient.

Where to Go for Treatment

The majority of American dental tourists live close enough to countries such as Canada, San José, Costa Rica or Monterrey, Mexico, to have procedures done in these locations. Other dental tourists choose to travel even farther. The following countries are renowned for their high standard dental care and include:


Thailand sees countless dental patients seeking less expensive treatment and has some of the largest, top-rate dental hospitals in the world, including Sea Smile Dental Clinic in Phuket, and Bumrungrad International Hospital.


Hungary is literally teeming with dentists who provide extensive dental work options, such as complete oral restorations, implants, and cosmetic oral surgeries. Moreover, Hungary’s travel accommodations are very reasonable and dental procedures can be done below 50 percent of what they would cost in the U.S.


Spain has always provided low cost health care. Due to its ongoing deflation status you can potentially save even more on dental costs when you visit this country.

Final Thoughts

Making a trip overseas may just be the solution to address your dental issues affordably without sacrificing quality. Research and discuss all costs associated with your dental work with your dentist prior to beginning any procedure and include your recovery time within the costs typically associated with international travel.


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