How far would you travel to see a dentist? Across the city, a few suburbs, maybe even interstate? How about to another continent?
The fact is that more and more people are willing to travel thousands of miles to seek out cheap dental Implants. India, Bali, Malaysia, and Thailand for example, all advertise the cost of dental implants at around 75% less than back home here in Australia.
Just let that sink in for a minute…
When you consider the average starting price of a dental implant in Sydney, for example, is around $3000, that’s a saving of around $2250. It’s no surprise then that over 15,000 Australians are packing their bags each and every year and booking flights to far flung destinations such as India to do exactly that. What’s more, it’s big business. Even if you take into consideration the average cost of a return flight from Sydney to Mumbai around $900 to $1000, plus accommodation, it’s still an enticing prospect for anyone looking for cheap dental implants.
Now for the bad news…
While the cost of dental implants in India is an attractive prospect, there are risks involved in travelling abroad for dental treatment which in addition to price, need to be taken into consideration. Let’s take a closer look…
Extensive dental work in a short space of time
For most people seeking cheap dental implants in India, they do so needing extensive dental work. This often includes multiple extractions, bone grafts, implants, and crowns. Typically, here in Australia, this work would normally be carried out over several months, and patients would be expected to have regular check-ups with their chosen dentist to ensure everything is on track, before proceeding with the next stage.
On the contrary, the majority of people travelling to places like Delhi and Mumbai for extensive dental work have a small window, usually over a two or three week period, when they can get the work done. Often, this means that dental hospitals will cram in multiple treatments in a very short amount of time. When this happens, it can and does dramatically increase the risk of something going wrong.
Varying degrees of training
Here in Australia, the standards and regulations for dentists are some of the highest in the world. Dentists, for example, have to go through high levels of clinical training set by the Australian Dental Council before they become a registered practicing dentist. What’s more, all dentists are reassessed and tested regularly to ensure that they comply with current regulations.
So, when you see a dentist in Australia for a dental implant consultation, you would know where they’ve been trained and if they’re registered and licensed. You would also know that, if you as a patient aren’t happy with the work, there are definitive ways that can help you get it right.
Alternatively, there’s no guarantee when you travel abroad to seek out cheap dental implants in India that the dentist in question has the same level of training. Moreover, if something does go wrong, what form of redress (if any) will you have?
Talking of redress, this brings us on to our next point to take into consideration.
Dental Implants India
What happens if something goes wrong?
Despite the fact that dental implant surgery is considered the gold standard of missing teeth replacement, by its very nature, even the best dental implant dentists will struggle to achieve a 100% success rate. The reason for this is simple – there are too many outside factors that can influence the end result. By this, we mean factors like:
- The patient’s commitment to delivering a strong oral care routine consistently.
- Ongoing lifestyle choices – diet, smoking, and exposure to diseases such as diabetes and obesity
- The body’s ability to achieve osseointegration (bone fusion). This is vital for dental implant success.
All of the above means that on average, implants have a 2% to 5% failure rate.
The problem with implant failure is that it doesn’t occur within a few days of the implantation process (however convenient that would be). Instead, dental implant failure often occurs some 6 or 12 months down the line, long after your trip to India has ended and your suntan has worn off.
If this was to happen with your local dentist here in Australia, you’d simply go back to them, they’d give you an examination and if it was found to be a problem due to the process itself, then nine times out of ten it would be put right at no further cost to you!
Conversely, if your implant dentist is a 24-hour journey away (including stopover) any form of redress becomes doubly complicated. Even if you could simply drop everything and jump on the next available flight, there’s not only the added cost of flights back to India, but there’s also no guarantee that the problem will be sorted. Moreover, despite the fact that English is well spoken in countries like India, it’s very easy for the nuances of a complaint or problem to become lost in translation.
So where does this often leave people?
More often than not, people are left with no choice but to seek help from a dentist back home in Australia who will have to try and put right any problems caused by undergoing dental implants in India. This in itself can become difficult because the local implant dentist will need to get in touch with the clinic where the initial work was carried out, so they can get an idea of the re-work needed to be done. Suddenly, the cost of dental implants isn’t looking quite so cheap!
Getting cheap dental implants abroad – What should you do?
Just to make things clear; there are some very good dental hospitals in India, and there are plenty of cases where people have undergone dental implant treatment in India with no hassle, no fuss, and have saved themselves a bundle of cash in the process. Equally, there is also a steady stream of documented evidence from people who have returned feeling less than satisfied.
If you are dead set on undergoing treatment abroad, the key takeaway is to weigh up all the risks carefully and don’t be swayed solely by the cheap dental implant costs. If you are considering undergoing dental implants in India then you should:
- Try to visit the hospital beforehand – This will add to the cost of your trip, but there’s nothing better than a gut feeling. Get a feel for the place, the staff and most importantly the dentist doing your dental implants. In addition it will be less of a worry because you’ll already know what to expect and where to go.
- Ask the right questions – While visiting, it’s a good opportunity to ask important questions such as the experience they have and an itemised breakdown of the total dental implants cost. Also don’t forget to ask for a full treatment plan.
- Ensure you have sufficient time – Booking a dental vacation using your annual two week vacation from work probably isn’t the best idea. Instead book an open ended flight and be prepared to stay longer if necessary.
- Accept the fact that you may need to return and budget for it – Hopefully, it won’t happen but it’s always best to budget for contingencies such as having to return abroad for dental work if you need to.
Alternatively, if you do decide that the cheap cost of dental implants is too much of a risk and would prefer to get your dental treatment carried out here in Sydney, then you can save money on treatment by:
- Checking your insurance policy – Some oral and maxillofacial surgery may fall in line with your health insurance policy, so it’s worth a look.
- Checking promotions – Many dentists, including us here at the Digital Dental Implants Institute, regularly run promotional offers on dental implants so it’s worth asking us how we can help you save money vs getting cheap dental implants in India
- Taking regular visits to a local dentist – This should promote early detection of any dental issue and negate the need for extensive dental work in the future.
So there you have it! When it comes to cheap dental implants, India might at first seem like a great way to save money and it can be, but only if you weigh up all the risks initially.
If you’d prefer to get your dental work done locally, then instead, why not contact our experienced team at the Digital Dental Implants Institute in Gosford or our sister practice the Digital Dental Surgery in Sydney. As well as providing first class dentistry using the latest technology, we give you total peace of mind. Call today for a consultation.