At my last visit with my dentist, he suggested dental implants to help me fix my smile. I have since seen two different cosmetic dentists and researched several others online and can’t swing the price they are asking to do it. But in my research, I found a place in Costa Rica which sounds like a win-win. It would be kind of a vacation, and I could also get my implants much cheaper there from a doctor that went to dental school in the United States and minored in implants. Anything I should be concerned about before I buy my plane tickets?
Nina, Portland, Oregon
I’m glad you asked before buying your tickets. This is a scenario where it could work out just like you are hoping and you may not have any problems. But there are some things that I would do more research into because if it looks too good to be true, it usually is.
First, verify the practice itself. Make sure it is legitimate. There have been several scary reports of patients who were harmed or had other serious problems after having cosmetic dentistry done in Costa Rica.
Double check the doctors’ credentials. The reason I suggest that is because in America, there are no minors in dental school. There are nine specialties that a dentist can study that are recognized by the American Dental Association, but even then, dental implants isn’t one of them.
The biggest question is what if things go wrong? Dental implants are not simple procedures. This is surgery, involving the bone where the tooth will be attached. Even in the United States, it is important to look for a dentist with a proven portfolio of patients who had successful implants, who uses high-quality implants, or there is a risk of failure. If the implant fails because the dentist there uses cheap implants or isn’t as experienced in successful implants as you hoped, there aren’t the same legal consequences or repercussions that there would be if you had the implants in the United States.
So you may be better off saving your money for implants here in the states and visit Costa Rica just for fun.
You may like to read more about dental implants.
This post is sponsored by Enfield dentist Dr. William Cummiskey at Generations Dental Care.