Dental tourism is a growing trend where patients are choosing to travel abroad for dental treatment. This is usually for high cost treatments such as dental implants and All on 4 treatment. The cost of treatment is usually significantly cheaper in countries such as Hungary or Spain with patients travelling from the UK and US to complete their treatment.
International dental companies work in different ways, some provide an in person consultation at their London base, which is either their own base or the office of a partner practice. Other dentists work only with phone email or Skype consultations and then see the patient for the first time at their premises.
For patient needs, the ideal service would provide a local consultation in their home country so that patient requirements can be fully evaluated in order for the correct treatment plan to be drawn up. Otherwise a draft treatment plan will have to be drawn up and x-rays may need to be taken in the UK and sent to the international practice for review.
Patients will need to decide and evaluate the dental practice carefully, and look at costs across the board. This is because additional costs for travel and accommodation will need to be factored in. The number of visits will need to be looked at, as will the duration of stay for each visit. This will represent a cost and the patient may need to take time off work for travel and treatment. The aftercare or patient guarantee will need to be considered and the entire treatment, service, level of care and costs will need to be reviewed before a decision on suitability is made.
The reputation of the clinic and dental team is important, as patients need to be confident in the standard of care they will receive, and not just the cost savings. Cost savings are likely to be several thousand pounds or dollars, even after travel and accommodation is factored in, but the entire package should be reviewed to see if it would be the best option for patients.
For patients to go ahead, the treatment is generally for larger more complex cases such as multiple or full jaw dental implants, or All on 4 treatment. The cost of a single dental implant or small number of dental implants or restorations would often not be worth travelling for treatment.
Patients must feel confident that they will receive high quality care and treatment, and that they will ultimately achieve the results, smile and confidence they are looking for. They must also be confident in the level and guarantee of after care as dental implants are designed to last a lifetime. Many international dental treatment companies have their own dental laboratories on site, which means they can provide a fast and efficient low cost procedure.