Planning To Go Abroad For Your Dental Implants?
Your Epsom dental team recommends considering the potential implications!
It’s coming up to that time of the year when, once Christmas is over, many of us will start to look at ways that we can improve our lives in the new year. This sometimes takes the form of resolutions; but even those of us who are not keen on making those, will still probably have a few thoughts about ways to improve in 2020.
It is probably no coincidence then that this is a popular time for advertisers and especially those in the ‘self improvement’ business. Cosmetic dentistry tends to fall into this bracket and many of you will probably have noticed an increase in the number of advertisements offering cheaper dental implants, particularly on-line but also in some magazines too.
If you are considering taking up one of these offers, please read on. The offers may not quite be all they seem!
The fact is that whilst you will get special offers from time to time which can reduce costs a little, most UK dentists’ prices for dental implants tend to be quite similar. Some of these advertisements though are from dental practices abroad and offer not only cheaper dental implants but some also include flights and accommodation. Where this is the case, this should certainly set off a few alarm bells.
Because of the cost of the titanium implants and the lengthy training needed to be allowed to place them in the UK, you can be sure that when you have an implant placed in this country, the dentist carrying out the procedure will be suitably qualified. If the cost is significantly lower abroad, you could be risking having your implant placed by someone who is under-qualified, or at the very least, less experienced. As this is a complex procedure, it is especially important that it is done correctly and in our opinion, it isn’t worth the risk of using a dentist that you aren’t familiar with.
It is also worth mentioning that qualifications can vary widely from one country to another and you should, at the very least, investigate the level of skills and experience of the dentist you are considering.
One of the key factors that make dental implants such an excellent option to replace a missing tooth is that, unlike dentures and bridges, they also replace the root part of the tooth. This is essential to support a very strong and secure artificial tooth – the crown. For this to be fully successful, the integration between bone and implant must happen. This process, known as osseointegration, is known to occur with titanium and also a few other materials. These are expensive though and if your implant is significantly cheaper it may well be that it is made from an inferior material. If this is the case, there is a real risk that the osseointegration process may not be fully successful, meaning that your new implant is not secure and may eventually work loose and even fall out.
Other risks and problems
There are a number of possible issues that can arise if you opt to have your treatment abroad. It is very difficult to know whether you will like the dentist and feel confident in them if you have never been before. You may also find that language is a barrier and that you are unable to make yourself fully understood or to understand what the dentist is telling you. This factor should not be ignored as communication between dentist and patient is very important in this procedure.
You should also consider your aftercare too. Although the dental implant procedure has a high success rate; even if you have a successful placement you will still need to have follow up checkups. Whilst some dentists abroad may have an agreement in place with a UK dentist to enable the patient to have follow up examinations in the UK, this may not be the case, or you may find yourself having to travel long distances within the country.
If you have to return to the dentist who placed your implant outside the UK, this will add to the expense and may result in the procedure costing you more than in the UK. If you choose to cut out this extra expense by not having your new implant checked, you may miss problems that might need rectifying and which could even threaten the implant itself.
We are not saying that all dentists abroad are bad; indeed there are some highly skilled dentists practicing in most countries. The problem lies in determining which they are. Taking a risk to save a few pounds is a gamble too far we feel, and we would recommend any of our Epsom dental patients considering this route to contact us first. We have a highly trained team of implant dentists who will enable you to have the procedure done safely and effectively, with follow up checks done locally too.
We also offer a number of payment plans which can help you to spread the cost of treatment over a period of time to help with your budget.
If you would like to discuss teeth implants with us, or need to contact us for any other reason related to your oral health, please contact the Clock Tower Dental Clinic on 01372 720136.