The Dangers of Dental Tourism

If you’ve started researching into overseas dental work, chances are you’ve read articles with many mixed feelings on the topic. With 15,000 Australians travelling overseas each year spending an estimated $300 million on dental and medical treatments, to avoid local costs, you would think it would be okay to take the chance yourself.

The thing is, whether you know someone who has successfully undergone dental treatment overseas or you’re enticed by the potential savings involved, there are a few things you should take into consideration.

Four risks you need to consider

 

Lenient regulations

Australian dental professionals in Australia are strictly regulated by the Dental Board of Australia (DBA), dental practitioners in these international locations would unlikely adhere to these strict regulations.

 

 

 

Poor training and infection control

The Australian Dental Association (ADA) imposes extremely strong controls over the equipment and materials used in Australian dental practices, as well as the infection control strict procedures. This ensures patients are subjected to the safest and highest quality hygienic treatment. No patient has ever contracted HIV from an Australian dentist however there are numerous reports of people contracting infectious diseases from simple medical procedures overseas. 

Who is accountable if something goes wrong?

Practitioners in Australia are held accountable for any failed treatments or complications arising from the procedure. Getting your root canal treatment abroad means that if anything goes wrong, you either have to make another trip over to rectify the issue or incur greater expenses to fix the problem locally.

 

 

Vague insurance

When opting for overseas treatments you will be going it alone as many travel health insurance companies will not cover overseas medical procedures and those that do are very evasive with what is covered and what is not.

 

 

Still unsure what to do?

The Australian Dental Association (ADA) advises against dental tourism and suggests “Australians ask themselves [whether] the overseas treatment will remedy dental problems long term. Will it be safe? Can patients be assured they will not be worse off? Are they fully aware of what treatment is actually being provided?”

So, before making the decision to have dental or medical treatment overseas, make sure you ask your clinician these simple questions:

1) What qualifications do you have? Where did you attend university?
2) Are you registered? Which dental board or standards association are you registered with?
3) What can go wrong with this treatment?
4) What happens if things do go wrong? How much will it cost to fix the issue?
5) How are the instruments cleaned and sterilised?

No matter what, Bite Dental has your back.

At the end of the day, it’s up to you to weigh up the pros and cons of dental tourism. Our team will be here for you to answer any concerns you may have and can rectify any issues as a result of overseas treatments. For more information on dental tourism or the services we provide, get in touch with Bite today.