Medical Tourism - Overseas Dental Work
Why Not Take a Holiday While You Get Your Bridge or Crown?
Medical tourism continues to be an expanding field. With healthcare in the US still inaccessible by many or dental work not covered by insurance, many are looking for alternative solutions. Dentistry in Thailand is a booming business.
Dentists are trained in the US and the UK, certified by the best universities with knowledge of the latest techniques...all for a portion of the price offered for the same services in the US.
Not to mention, after getting your teeth filled or whitened, you can travel through the mountains on the back of an elephant or visit ancient temples while getting cheap massages and eating really good food. Who wouldn't look forward to going to the dentist?
Grace Dental in Chiang Mai, Thailand
What You Can Expect
Since I live in Chiang Mai, I can only recommend the actual dental clinic that I go to. Grace Dental is located in the heart of Chiang Mai, a 15 minute drive from the airport. It is in a very trendy section of town loaded with little boutiques, restaurants and coffee shops. If you come with a spouse or friend, they'll have plenty to walk around and see while you're having your dental work done.
The dentists are very kind and speak very good English. The staff will make an appointment for you via e-mail or telephone. And, the dentists work together in teams. So, if you have multiple issues to contend with, they will have a conference regarding your mouth and decide the best plan of action.
To give you some idea of costs... I luckily have a pretty healthy mouth, so I go in for routine cleanings mainly.
A cleaning, the type that includes scaling (where they clean just under the gum line) runs about $30.00. They add on a little bit more if they have a lot of plaque to remove.
A filling, or an addition to a tooth (cosmetic to make a tooth look fuller) runs about $40 for a tooth. And, to fill in a gap on the front teeth, they charge about $15. (Yes - it's pretty miraculous!).
I couldn't be happier with each visit I've had with them.
A friend of mine just had a final cap placed over an implant that was never finished. Grace dental did the research to find out what type of post was drilled into the bone and the final cap that was custom created ended up being around $350. In the US, the quote given was $1500. for the same crown.
Here is a brief list of what this place offers:
- Prosthodontics: crown, bridge, denture and restoration
- Dental Implants: natural tooth replacement
- Periodontics: gum disease, tooth cleaning
- Oral Surgery: wisdom teeth and other extractions
- Orthodontics: teeth realignment
- Endodontics: root canal
- Esthetic Dentistry: tooth whitening, space closing
- Pediatric Dentistry: for children
A Medical Tourist Brings Back a Souvenir
In 2005, I met a friend on the internet, back when MySpace was a big fad. We were pen pals for about 6 months while he was in New York City and I was in Chiang Mai, Thailand. He complained for several months about having to get dental work done but how everything cost so much in New York City.
I invited him to come out for his Christmas holiday to meet up, have a vacation and get his dental work done.
When he checked into the prices, he found to get one tooth fixed, was the same price as a flight and was convinced to book his tickets. We met in person for the first time at the airport. We had a great time touring through the city for the first couple of days; going to see the main temple on the mountain, looking at gibbons and elephants, eating amazing Thai food and getting really cheap foot massages. Then, the dental appointments began. For four days, he would go to the dentist and I would hang out in nearby cafes. He was thrilled with the work they did on his teeth.
To make a long story short, that pen pal, is now my husband and he has great looking teeth. Now, both of us reside in Chiang Mai and continue to have affordable dental work.
And, I should end this story by letting you know, it was still cheaper to fly to Thailand, get all of his dental work done and have a week long holiday, than it would have been for him to get the same work done in New York City. And, he got a wife out of the deal too!