With the economy today, many consumers simply cannot afford quality dental care. When you add to that the fact that more than 50 percent of Americans do not have dental insurance coverage, you see that there is a dental crisis in the nation today.
Medicare does not typically cover any dental procedures and government-funded Medicaid covers dental work only for those less than 21 years of age. This means that many consumers who need dental work are simply doing without.
Or, they are traveling the globe in search of a less expensive option. Dental Tourism is a term given to this option.
According to an article in BusinessWeek, Dental Tourism has become a booming industry. Dental Tourism is the process of traveling to another country in order to obtain cheaper and more affordable dental care.
Areas such as Prague, Budapest, Tijuana and Bangkok have an abundance of dental clinics that offer much lower rates than those in America. Studies have shown that nearly 30 percent of the population of Texas, for those on the Rio Grande side, crosses into Mexico in order to obtain cheaper dental care.
This process was given the name Dental Tourism because most of these procedures are simply not performed in one sitting. They may take several days to complete. Once the patient has had his or her initial dental visit, they typically have four or five days to vacation in the area before their dental care is completed.
Many consumers have chosen this process to enjoy a longer vacation while having their dental work completed. But just how much can you save through Dental Tourism?
In the United States and Europe, a dental filling can cost as much as $300 to $400. For the exact same treatment, you can get the procedure done for as little as $20 to $40 in Dental Tourism countries. Dentures can cost as much as $1,000 in America and many European countries while they can be purchased for only $200 in Dental Tourism countries. Root canals can also be paid for at a much lower cost; $100 to $200 as opposed to $3,000 in the USA and Europe.
This is enough of a savings to actual pay for the vacation so those who are planning to have these procedures done simply combine their vacation with their dental care visits. If you need a dental procedure that cannot be completed in one visit; root canals, dentures, bridges, etc., it simply makes sense to combine your travel with your dental procedures and potentially save thousands of dollars overall.
Again, the savings from these dental procedures could actually pay for the vacation and you may still have several hundred dollars left over.
Here is a great infographic of dental care tourism: