A lot of people avoid seeing the dentist because they’re unable to afford the resulting bills. If you’re one of them, you’ve come to the right place.
This article will walk you through the ins and outs of dental tourism: destinations, procedures, savings, top clinics, and more.
By the time you’re finished reading, you’ll be armed with all the necessary information to find high-quality, low-cost dental work abroad.
Why are so many Westerners going abroad for dental work? The answer can be summed up in two words: Cost Savings.
Dental work in the United States, Australia, and other Western countries can be pricey, to put it mildly. Without good dental insurance, major procedures are cost-prohibitive for most people.
Therein lies the appeal of dental tourism. You can save a remarkable amount of money by having your procedure done in a foreign country. On top of that, care is delivered in a time-efficient manner; there are no long wait times.
It’s important to note here that inexpensive doesn’t mean second-rate. There are countless reputable dental clinics abroad that deliver outstanding care on par with Western standards.
That being said, you should certainly take care when selecting a foreign dentist to work on your teeth. We’ll get into that a bit later.
For now, let’s focus on the main benefits of dental tourism.
The United States has the most expensive healthcare in the world.World Population Review
Health Care Costs By Country 2021
“The United States spends the most on healthcare per person every year. The ten countries that spend the most on healthcare per person are:1. United States ($10,586).”
View in Article As a result, more and more Americans who lack good health insurance are becoming interested in medical tourism.
How much can you save? It depends on the procedure and clinic, but dental tourists can save 70% or more. The largest savings are generally reserved for the most expensive treatments, such as complex cosmetic and restorative work.
But you can save on minor procedures as well. These include:
The following table shows the average cost of a dental implant in seven countries. Prices are in US dollars.
|Country||Dental Implant Cost|
You may be wondering why the cost of dentistry is so much cheaper in these countries. To reiterate, it is not because their dentists lack experience or professionalism.
Rather, it is because their general cost of living is lower than that of Western countries. Where the cost of living is cheaper, the salaries are smaller. Hence, dentists in developing countries can afford to charge much less for the same work.
Dental tourism is a rapidly expanding global industry. It is projected to be worth $5.83 billion by 2025.GlobeNewswire
Dental Tourism Market to Grow at 12% CAGR to Hit $5.83 billion by 2025 – Adroit Market Research
“The global dental tourism market size is estimated to be worth USD 5.83 billion by 2025.”
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With that in mind, many clinics worldwide market their services to dental tourists from Western countries.
To remain competitive in such a vibrant market, they need to have cutting-edge facilities and equipment, along with highly-skilled dentists.
Their customer service also has to be exceptional. It keeps patients happy and business flowing.
To the same end, many clinics take steps to gain accreditation from national and international organizations. Doing so helps satisfy patients that they are receiving top-notch clinical care.
Popular destinations for dental tourists include Mexico, Thailand, Turkey, Costa Rica, India, and Vietnam. Mexico and Costa Rica are especially popular among Americans, while Australians opt for Thailand or Vietnam.
Note that all the foregoing countries are also popular tourist destinations in general. That’s part of what makes dental tourism so attractive.
Because recovery from a dental procedure is relatively quick and easy, many people choose to parlay their trip into a full vacation.
Following your procedure, you can see the sights, sample the local cuisine, or relax on the beach, all the while showing off your new and improved smile. We will take a look at what each major destination has to offer in a later section.
Finding cheap dental work abroad is easy. However, selecting the right clinic requires a little more research. While it may be tempting to go for the least expensive option, you should aim to balance affordability and quality.
We can help you do just that. We will provide you with a shortlist of vetted clinics and dentists to consider depending on your chosen destination. Each one has experience treating foreigners and a reputation for superb patient care.
Many clinics offer package deals that bundle the costs of your dental work. For instance, a dental tourism package may include:
If you’d prefer to research foreign dentists on your own, pay special attention to the following factors:
If a clinic claims recognition from an international body, visit the latter’s website to verify that the claim is valid. Major accreditation groups like Joint Commission International publish lists of accredited facilities.
Don’t hesitate to request resumes showing providers’ education and experience before making a final decision. It’s your right to know these particulars.
Not all dental clinics are equally worthy of your trust—let alone your money. Here are some definite red flags to be aware of while doing your research.
Mexico is a favorite destination among dental tourists from the US. The Mexican town of Los Algodones is so prolific in this regard that it has earned the nickname “Molar City.” Business Insider
This tiny Mexican town has more than 350 dentists — and treats the thousands of Americans who flock across the border for dental care.
“For Americans looking to mix in a little dental work with their vacations, there is no better place than Vicente Guerrero, a small Mexican border town better known by its nickname: Los Algodones, or Molar City.”
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Cities such as Tijuana, Cancun, Juarez, and Puerto Vallarta likewise have excellent dental clinics that cater to foreign patients.
Here are a few of the very best dental providers in Mexico:
The coastal resort town of Cancun, famous for its idyllic beaches, is perfect for those looking to combine their dental treatment with a relaxing holiday.
India is a thriving market for all kinds of medical tourism, including dental. Its costs are generally comparable to Mexico’s, which means Westerners can save 50% or more.
The top destinations within India are New Delhi, Chandigarh, Mumbai, and Ahmedabad. These dental clinics have very good track records:
India attracts millions of tourists from around the globe with its fascinating history and geography, striking temples, and tranquil seaside towns. It makes for an enriching and exotic travel experience.
Costa Rica is a health tourism hotspot and a popular destination for dental tourists. The country is close to Canada and the US, which makes traveling easy. Dental work is 60 to 80% cheaper in Costa Rica compared to the US or Canada.Tourism Review News
DENTAL TOURISM IS FLOURISHING IN COSTA RICA
“Costa Rica: A Popular Destination for Dental Tourism. Dental procedure in Costa Rica is 60-80% cheaper than dental clinics in the United States, Canada.”
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Below are four of the best clinics in and around San Jose, Costa Rica:
Costa Rica is awash with natural beauty. Tourists marvel at its pristine beaches, tropical rainforests, active volcanoes, and impressive biodiversity.
Thailand, known for its advanced healthcare system, has long been regarded as Asia’s leading medical tourism destination.NCBI
Thailand top destination for medical tourists
“Why is Thailand so popular? It’s because of the Thai health care system. It’s advanced and affordable, and these are the two most important criteria for would-be medical tourists.”
View in Article Its location makes it very popular with dental tourists from Australia.
Most of the clinics catering to foreigners can be found in the capital city of Bangkok. Examples include:
Bangkok is the most visited city in the world.Forbes
Bangkok Is The Most Visited City In The World Again
“It was named the world’s most visited city for the past four years.”
View in Article Its attractions are numerous and varied.
In Bangkok, you’ll find a staggering array of museums, royal palaces, temples, and authentic cultural performances. It is further celebrated for its shopping and nightlife.
Turkey has a burgeoning medical tourism industry. Many of the foreigners treated in Turkey come from Europe, although some Americans and Australians decide to make the trip as well.
The cost of dental work in Turkey is roughly half of what clinics in the US charge. Depending on the procedure, savings can be much more significant.
Here are a few of Turkey’s first-rate dental clinics:
Turkey’s ancient cities and vivid Mediterranean coastline draw in millions of foreign tourists. From Greco-Roman ruins to Byzantine mosques, there’s plenty to keep you captivated.
Dental vacations to Vietnam are increasingly popular among Australians looking to save money on care. Clinics in Vietnam provide top-grade dental work at a small fraction of Western prices.
You’ll find the best clinics in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. The Australian Dental Clinic (Hanoi) and East Rose Dental (HCMC) are the two finest.
Beyond affordable dentistry, Vietnam offers visitors a unique blend of modernity and tradition. Colonial architecture, imperial monuments, and Buddhist temples are just a few of the many points of interest.
Situated in the Balkan Peninsula, Croatia attracts many dental tourists from the UK and other West European countries.
The top providers are located in the cities of Zadar and Split and the coastal towns of Trogir and Seget Donji.
Dental clinics in Croatia:
Croatia’s Adriatic coast is lined with golden beaches and upscale resorts. The country also maintains hundreds of national parks and nature reserves.
South Korea is a natural choice for many medical tourists due to its highly advanced medical technologies. Its healthcare system is rated among the very best in the world.CEOWorld
Revealed: Countries With The Best Health Care Systems, 2021
“South Korea has the best health care systems in the world.”
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Good Life Dental Hospital is one of many top-grade clinics located in the capital city of Seoul.
South Korea is brimming with intriguing art, shrines, and temples inspired by Buddhism and Confucianism. Its cuisine and entertainment industry are world-famous.
Bulgaria is set in Southeastern Europe. Dental clinics in Sofia, the country’s capital city, provide exceptional care at very affordable rates. Foreigners can save well over 50% on dental work in Bulgaria.
Two of the leading clinics in Sofia are:
Bulgaria is admired for its tremendous biodiversity, which is protected and displayed via several parks and reserves. Its coastal areas and winter resorts also attract tourists.
Colombia has joined Costa Rica and Mexico as a preferred spot for dental tourists from the US. American patients can save more than 70% on common procedures.
Here’s a sampling of top-grade dental providers in Colombia:
Colombia is a focal point of cultural activity, renowned for its literature, art, and architecture. Its geography is remarkably mixed, consisting of rain forests, deserts, and tropical grasslands. Other attractions include its coffee region and cycling tours.
Dental tourism makes world-class care accessible for uninsured patients. In countries like Mexico, Thailand, India, and Costa Rica (to name a few), you’ll get Western-quality treatment at a price that suits your budget.
Contact us today with any questions regarding procedures, clinics, and costs.