The industry of dental tourism has been burgeoning since the advent of health insurance policies, professional regulations and equipment tariffs. It is a lucrative industry to encourage people seeking dental care to look outside their country for places which offer the same quality of service at a reasonable cost. This practice is already being done in places such as Croatia, Turkey, Hungary for European regions and Mexico, for those in the United States and Canada. Much has been said about the industry of dental tourism in different online reviews and medical blog sites. Hence, this article attempts to separate fact from fiction in answering the frequently asked questions of prospective dental service tourists.
Question 1: What is dental tourism?
In layman's terms, dental tourism is the industry or practice of seeking dental treatment abroad. This is usually considered a viable alternative for people residing in countries wherein the cost of treatment is unconscionably high for the average person. Incidental to seeking treatment, dental tourists make the most of the opportunity to travel by using some of their savings from seeking treatment abroad to visit some of the host country's popular tourist attractions.
The amount you save varies depending on the treatment you seek. On average however, the cost of dental treatment is 50 to 75 percent lower in Mexico. That redounds to hundreds, if not thousands of dollars worth of savings.
However if you only require minor dental services, or if you want to stay at a 5 star Mexico resort, your total savings will be less, and your travel costs could consume most of the money you save. In that case, you have a free vacation compared to what you might have paid back home.
More extensive dental care, or if you are willing to accept 3 star accommodations few block from the beach, or you are going to border towns for a day, you will likely end up with your dental care, possibly a free vacation and money in your pocket. This is a great deal.
Question 3: What is the quality of service?
The common misconception concerning dental tourism is that lower cost denotes a poorer quality of service. This is the economic paradigm created by branded dental products which propagates the idea that by paying less, one gets a cheap kind of toothpaste instead of quality oral prophylactic treatment. The quality of service provided by dental tourism firms is world class and rivals that of dental care providers in the United States.
The low cost of service is due to the lower operating costs of dental firms in Mexico. Expensive license fees and exorbitant tariff rates on dental supplies and equipment in the United States have inflated the cost of dental services. This is not the case in Mexico.
Question 4: What kind of services are available?
Virtually any dental service available in the United States is also available in Mexico. Dental care providers in Mexico offer everything from simple oral prophylaxis and filling installations to dental surgery.
Question 5: Who are the "dentists"?
Accredited dentists who are graduates of the largest medical schools in the United States practice in places such near the city of Tijuana and other localities situated near the border. Contrary to what skeptics would suggest, dental tourism does not involve seeking the services of a quack dentist who will perform all sorts of haphazard procedures.
Medical tourism is for everyone. Skeptics of dental tourism suggest that partaking of dental tourism nullifies the benefits of existing health insurance policies. In truth, going abroad to seek treatment in dental care facilities in Mexico which are partner establishments of leading insurance companies in the United States actually augment the benefits of having a health insurance policy.
Many health insurance policies consider dental care a cosmetic and non essential service. Thus, only a portion of the cost of treatment is included in the coverage. The policy holder is still responsible for shouldering most of the cost. Seeking dental treatment in Mexico redounds to not having to pay so much outside of what the insurance policy can cover.
Question 7: Isn't it dangerous to go to Mexico?
Border hopping and a culture of mugging is a fictitious paradigm created by Hollywood. Going to Mexico for treatment is incredibly safe. Many dental care providers offer free transportation from border junctions to their medical facilities which are just yards away. This means that a person seeking dental treatment can easily commute to the border, make the crossing and let the shuttle service of the dental care facility handle the round trip. This eliminates all possible problems in terms of security and navigation. For those going to Mexico strictly for treatment, the shuttle of the dental facility is sufficient for the trip. For those seeking to tour nearby areas after treatment, there is an option to commute to the city of Tijuana to see some popular tourist attractions.
Question 8: Where do I stay as a dental tourist?
Many dental care facilities in Mexico have facilities for in-patients who have undergone dental surgery. Thus, if a patient is not so mobile after an operation, finding a place to stay is not a problem. The lodging in dental care facilities also means that a nurse will be catering to the needs of a patient round the clock. Be advised to check Mexico Accomodations on this list or choose lists by city on the bottom of the page
Question 9: What if I have limited time to tour?
Several large scale dental care facilities in Mexico are constructed to look like resorts. If you want to have dental work done as a tourist but you only have limited time to stay in Mexico, do not waste time on the road and simply relax in one of the country's coveted dental resorts. When touring is not possibly, some much needed rest and relaxation presents a viable alternative.
Question 10: Do they have the latest technology?
Mexican dental care facilities have the latest technologies in terms of dental care. They also make use of high quality sanitation instruments such as an autoclave which combines steam and pressure to ensure that nothing enters your mouth without being cleaned.
Hopefully this short FAQ article has dispelled any doubts about dental tourism. It is practical and sensible for those living in countries where the cost of treatment is unconscionably high.