Every year, tens of thousands of dental patients arrive in Costa Rica seeking low prices on dental procedures like All on 4, dental implants and cosmetic dentistry. No matter how many warnings they receive, some still seek dental clinics that promise the lowest prices regardless of quality. If you’re one of those patients that needs to get the lowest price, this article is for you.
If you are missing one or more teeth, the best option for replacing these lost teeth is dental implants. In most cases, dental implants are a better solution than dentures and removable bridges. Dental implants are durable, resistant and natural-looking; they also last a lifetime.
Here are some good tips to help you get the best dental implants at low prices in Costa Rica. (Notice I didn’t say “the lowest prices!”)
1. Discuss Your Procedure in Advance
Even minor dental surgery or getting crowns creates some fear and apprehension. The way your dentist speaks to you and makes you feel is important to help reduce or eliminate stress. When you talk to your dentist about the procedure, in addition to all the pertinent questions, you should also ask yourself if the dentist makes you feel at ease, or on the contrary, makes you feel like a number or an annoyance. If the dentist makes you feel uncomfortable, it’s not a good sign. Find a clinic with compassionate and caring representatives that take the time to answer your questions. This is a clinic you can trust.
2. Get Information About What the Procedure Entails
While you should always consult a dentist, dental implants are a well-established, standard procedure with few complications, and there’s plenty of reliable information online. If you do some research, you’ll be able to ask pertinent questions to your dentist and understand better his or her explanations. For more information about dental implants, visit Costa Rica Dental Guide.
3. Seek a Specialist
Just because a dental clinic claims to place lots of dental implants does not mean that they are qualified to place implants. It is important for patients to know that only two types of specialists are qualified to place dental implants.
- Maxillofacial Surgeons
If the practice you are considering does not have a periodontist or a maxillofacial surgeon, then they are not qualified to place dental implants. It doesn’t matter how many specialty certificates or courses they may have taken. It doesn’t matter if they call themselves “dental implantologists” (no such title exists according to the ADA) or dental implant specialists. Only clinics that utilize a periodontist or maxillofacial surgeon are qualified to place your dental implants. (Read more about Misconceptions Regarding Dental Implant Specialists.)
4. Work with a Dentist Who is Fluent in English
If you choose to receive dental work in Costa Rica like many Americans are doing, make sure that your dentist is fluent in English. Experienced dental tourism dentists are often fluent in English to satisfy the constantly increasing demand of international patients arriving daily. This is yet another reason why it’s a good idea to talk with your dentist beforehand. You’ll get a better result by talking with a person who understands your questions and who will give you explanations and instructions in your mother tongue. Some clinics are American-owned and operated. These clinics guarantee that your dentist will speak fluent English.
5. Consider Getting Other Dental Work Done
If you plan to receive dental care in Costa Rica, you might want to consider additional dental work that you might need or to bring family and friends that might also need dental care. Families that get dental care together often end up having more fun! For example, if you are traveling to Costa Rica with family or friends, ask them if they need any dental work as well. Doing so will split the cost of the trip among the different procedures and might very well save you quite a bit of money.
6. Ask about Guarantees
The best quality dental materials come with a guarantee against breakage or other defects within a period of years. Asking if the materials come with a guarantee is one way to assure that you are getting quality implants. The top-rated dental clinics offer a written lifetime guarantee on high quality titanium dental implants.
7. Choose a Clinic that Helps with Travel Planning
The best dental tourism clinics in Costa Rica have hospitality coordinators and staff to help patients plan their travel and make reservations at recommended hotels and lodges. They can help with recommending airlines and will also arrange your airport pickup. Clinics that offer these services are experienced in managing the needs of dental tourists. Remember, the best care is rarely the least expensive…and the least expensive care is rarely the best.
The best dental clinics provide the highest quality care and materials at competitive prices that save patients an average of 50% to 70% when compared to costs for the same dental care in the USA. If you need to save more than 70%, you will be taking a risk. Patients that choose the lowest-priced dental care often regret their decisions. Research the best dental clinics in Costa Rica, read patient reviews and ask for patient references to find the best dental clinic for your needs.
Patrick Goodness is the founder and CEO of Goodness Dental, ranked the #1 dental clinic in Costa Rica and one of the Top Ten Dental Clinics in the World by Global Clinic Ranking. Goodness writes and lectures frequently on global medical and dental tourism topics and is an outspoken advocate for affordable dental care for everyone.