The Hidden Cost of “Vacation Dentistry”

added on: October 6, 2022

Would you plan to have dental work done on vacation? Seeing the dentist might not be on the top of your list of things to do on vacation, but many people travel abroad specifically for dental proceduresparticularly for implants. Vacation dentistry, or dental tourism, has risen in popularity as people look for cheap alternatives to dentistry in the United States. Implants can be expensive, as they’re intended to last through daily wear over many years. Some foreign countries offer dental implants for a fraction of the cost, but choosing a thrifty implant can ultimately cost you more.

Discover some of the risks of dental tourism:

  1. A different country means different laws regulating dental care. Some countries require less education to practice dentistry, or have fewer restrictions on a dental practice’s operations. This can result in infections, an improperly installed implant, or a variety of other health complications.
  2. If something goes wrong at a foreign dental office, finding medical care or legal representation is more difficult as a tourist. Tourists often do not have the same rights as citizens, and language and cultural barriers can also stand in the way of finding help.
  3. The inexpensive nature of foreign implants often results in long-term complications that appear after you return to the United States. It may take weeks or years, but we have seen the results of cheap implants in our office many times. These implants usually need to be replaced, as they have either been installed incorrectly or are made of poor materials—or both. This means that your mission to find affordable dental care will be more expensive in the end.


Vacation dentistry may seem cost-effective, but it’s important to bear these risks in mind. Staying local can actually save you more money as you avoid travel costs and the complications that follow a cheap implant. Dental implants are an investment, and when done correctly they can last decades. If you’re looking for a new dentist to help you with implants or other dental work, read our guide to choosing a dentist for tips on finding a safe and economical option. Or, if you need a dentist near Cary, North Carolina, please call us at 919.460.9665 and we will be happy to set up an appointment for you.