Facts About Overseas Dental Tourism

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Thinking about Getting Dental Implant Treatment Overseas?

Overseas dental holidays may look appealing, but be aware of all the facts & risks, and come in for a free implant quote from Aria Dental – before you book that flight.

It seems like the perfect deal. A couple of weeks away in Bali or Thailand in a luxury hotel, some fun in the sun, and an important dental procedure thrown in at a fraction of the price you’d pay back home. What could go wrong?

Unfortunately, many people researching dental clinics and treatment options simply research the up-front costs without thinking through the long-term issues associated with implants. This is where things can go wrong, because when it comes to tooth implants, costs aren’t the only consideration.  For example, you’ll need to factor in the standards and potential consequences of the treatment – in other words, the thing that could go wrong – and what this may mean to your health and finances.

To assess the viability of an overseas dental treatment, it’s imperative you investigate the company’s training standards, government regulations, hygiene, infection control standards, insurance policies and more.


ADA Logo

Visiting dentists in Thailand, Bali: the ADA’s stance

Some Aussies have had dental work in Asia, but despite the appeal of popping over to Thailand or Bali for some cheap dentistry, the Australian Dental Association advocates against this. Although you may save some money upfront, if things go wrong, you could end up losing a lot more than your savings…

If you’re thinking of overseas dental work, please visit Aria Dental for a free quote. It may be wrong to assume that you can’t afford dental work in Perth. The initial cost of implant placement may be a little higher; but you may save money over time. And there are other benefits well worth considering.

Having your dental implants placed in Perth

When looking at the cost of dental implants, you have to be realistic. Factor in everything. Understand that it’s not just about the cost of the implant or the placement. Because having dental implants involves much more – there’s ongoing care, support – and legal protection to consider.

If you choose to have dental implants placed in Perth, here’s what you can look forward to:

  • No airfares or hotel accommodation – Book your procedure in Perth, and you don’t have to fly overseas and pay for expensive accommodation
  • Less time off work – Have you implants placed here, and you’ll save travel time
  • After-care – This is the big issue that many forget. After-care is a big deal with dental implants. You’ll require follow-up appointments, check-ups, regular telephone communications, advice, care from our dental staff, and more.
  • Health insurance – You may be entitled to private health insurance rebates here in Australia, but not if you have your procedure is performed offshore.
  • Maintenance – As mentioned, you’ll need a variety of maintenance appointments over the following years. Have your procedure performed offshore, and Australian dental clinics may not have the equipment and similar materials to adapt or substitute the materials you were given offshore and won’t be able to provide ongoing maintenance. Australian dentists are unable to service non-TGA compliant dental implants. If repair components are not available in Australia, even minor complications need to be directed back to their overseas dentist, which inevitably means you footing the bill for another expensive trip overseas. Consequently, it’s not uncommon to see patients with dental treatment completed overseas needing their work redone. The costs presumably saved on the initial treatment often end up being paid many times over for the maintenance and rectification of complications.
  • Radiation standards – All x-ray equipment used in dental surgeries in Australia is licensed and maintained. The units are calibrated to reduce the radiation dose that a patient receives, and to ensure that the units are not leaking radiation. There are design protocols whereby the surgery walls are lead-lined to prevent radiation scatter. It is important to find out whether these protocols are in place in overseas clinics.
  • Advertising – Dental tourism benefits from the general tourism industry overseas – a lot of money is invested in promoting overseas travel – and dental services. There’s no regulatory body (such as Australia’s AHPRA) that protects against ‘false testimonials’, and there’s no way of knowing whether the reviews are genuine. Advertising and online testimonials are not reliable sources.
  • Complications – No surgical procedure is bullet-proof. Things can go wrong. If you’ve returned home to discover something’s not right, it’s going to be quite inconvenient to take more time off work, fly back, and pay for another round of accommodation. Additionally, most travel insurance policies do not cover the cost of medical treatment as part of a dental tourism visit.
  • Legal ramifications – You’re protected here in Australia for a variety of practitioner and hygiene laws. Step offshore, and you’re privy to a different legal system spoken in a different language – with no Australian legal support.
  • Infection control – Overseas clinics may appear ‘state-of-the-art’, but what does that tell you? Judging a clinic by its appearance is not the most sensible approach. There should be strict protocols in place such as the Australian standards, where certain classes of autoclaves must be used, and appropriate disposal procedures must be followed. Dentists in other countries may claim their equipment is sterilised appropriately, but unless there are strict regulatory guidelines and systems in place, no-one would be held accountable. Australians are often reluctant to drink water overseas due to concerns regarding hygiene and infection. It would be fair to question whether they would be willing to undergo a medical or dental surgical procedure overseas with less stringent guidelines than in Australia.
  • Quality of care – Many overseas dentists claim they are specialists; however, they are only recognised as specialists by the requirements of their country. Australian standards to become a dental specialist are amongst the highest in the world. The immediate dental results may look aesthetically pleasing; although, when having extensive crown and bridgework completed, it is far more important that the foundations have been adequately prepared. Unfortunately, this cannot be determined by the patient. All dental treatment has a finite lifespan. A crown can be replaced several times. However, if the foundation is inadequate, then once the initial crown fails, a new crown may not be able to be fabricated and the tooth may require removal. This, in turn, increases the financial and biological costs, as further treatment such as dental implants would be required.
  • Competitive costs – There are many Australian dental clinics that can offer very competitive prices for their dental services. Additionally, they offer you peace of mind knowing that strict standards and protocols are in place for quality of care.

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