Dental implants offer a permanent solution for replacing missing teeth; however, many patients avoid the procedure due to the perceived costs of having dental implants put in. Increasingly people are turning to dental tourism to find cheap dental implants in Thailand. However, dental implants in Thailand may end up costing more than you think.
What are Dental Implants?
Dental implants consist of a metal post which is surgically inserted into the jaw, that is used to support an artificial crown. An abutment is also used to connect the crown and the post together securely.
Dental implants are usually made from titanium due to its durability and biocompatibility, while crowns can be constructed from a variety of materials including porcelain, ceramic and zirconia.
Benefits of Dental Implants
Dental implants have several benefits compared with other tooth replacement options including:
- Improved appearance due to the natural look of the replacement crowns.
- Better speech compared with dentures, which can slip and cause gagging.
- More comfort than other tooth replacement options, as the implant fuses with your bone to become a natural part of you.
- Easier chewing, so you do not need to alter your diet.
- Better oral health as dental implants, unlike dentures, support the underlying bone and tissue to prevent atrophy, and your adjacent teeth do not need to be altered.
- Durability, the titanium implants mean that your tooth replacement is resistant to corrosion, giving a longer lifetime than dentures or bridges.
Dental Implant Procedure
Dental implants are usually installed in two stages. In the first stage of the dental implant procedure, your dentist will make an incision in your gum and drill a small hole into the jawbone. The post, which resembles a small screw, is then embedded in place, the gum is placed back over the implant, and the incision is closed to allow the implant, bone, and tissue to fuse. The fusion and healing process can take 3 – 6 months.
The second stage of the dental implant procedure involves fitting the abutment and crown. The gum will be reopened to expose the implant so that the abutment can be connected. The crown is then attached to the abutment using dental cement and a small screw.
Cost of Dental Implants in Thailand
The cost of dental implants in Thailand for a single tooth can be as much as 40 – 50% less than the cost of dental implants in Australia, however, you should also factor in the cost of travel and accommodation while you are there, as well as the cost for additional consultations and follow ups after surgery. You may also need additional surgeries such as a bone graft or sinus lift before the implant surgery, which incur extra costs.
As dental implant surgery and recovery can be a lengthy process, taking up to a year before completely healing in some cases, you may need to budget for multiple trips to Thailand.
Risks of Dental Implants in Thailand
Dentists all over the world are subject to the standards and regulations of the governing bodies for dentistry. And while dentists that train in Thailand may undergo rigorous education and training processes, they operate to a different set of standards than those adhered to in Australia which can often mean that you may not get the results you expect.
Travelling abroad for dental implants in Thailand also puts you at risk of complications post-surgery due to the different varieties of pathogens and bacteria found in Thailand. It is also not recommended that you travel after surgery as you can develop life-threatening blood clots.
As most people are not covered for international dental work through their insurance, you won’t be able to make a claim with your provider unless it is deemed an emergency. You also do not have any avenue for complaint or recompense if the procedure does not turn out as expected or complications arise.
Dental implants in Thailand may end up costing more than you bargained for. There are many ways that you can mitigate the costs of dental implants in Australia, including private insurance, payment plans, and special financing options. To discuss dental implants and how they can help you achieve a better smile, call Scott Street Dental on (02) 9158 6393.