It probably comes as no surprise to most people that dental work here in Australia is expensive when compared to other countries. Even common cosmetic dental procedures such as teeth whitening can cost around 50% – 60% more than say…teeth whitening in Thailand.
It’s understandable, therefore, why 15,000 Australian travel to places like India, the Philippines, Bali and Thailand for dental and medical treatment every year. After all, what could be better? Cheap dental treatment and plenty of sun, sea and sand to aid recovery!
However, before you go rushing off to find a cheap flight to Bangkok or Chiang Mai, it’s worth bearing in mind that there are risks involved, even when undergoing something as simple as teeth whitening treatment, that you might not experience from a dental practice back home. With this in mind, let’s take a closer look at those risks…
Little or no recompense
If you undergo teeth whitening treatment here in Australia it’s good to know that dentists are heavily regulated. Should something go wrong, there are follow-up steps that you can take. Unhappy patients also have access to complaints commission boards and even courts should the need arise.
However, when you undergo teeth whitening in Thailand for instance, and you are unfortunate enough to encounter problems, it’s unlikely that you’ll have access to any of those things. The result is that you may be left after completing your treatment with nowhere to turn.
Top tip – If you are seeking out teeth whitening in Thailand you might want to look out the few dental hospitals or dentists that are recognised under the government’s Quality Improvement Accreditation. While they may be more expensive, they do at least give you a little more peace-of-mind.
Talking of peace of mind, we need to talk about recovery…
In some cases, laser teeth whitening treatment can cause tooth sensitivity. This can be mild to moderate twinges in some people while in others, sensitivity may appear more severe.
Of course, it’s great to enjoy the sights, smells and buzz of a foreign country while on vacation but it probably isn’t such an engaging experience when you’re trying to recover.
Firstly, It may be harder to obtain the over-the-counter medications you need to control any sensitivity but in addition, trying to follow a ‘white diet’ for 24 hours after treatment isn’t always easy when you have to rely on food supplied by restaurants and/or street food vendors.
Then, of course, there’s the sunlight… While sunshine does not cause tooth sensitivity it can exacerbate the problem when your teeth are faced with direct sunlight after a course of whitening treatment.
Of course in places like Thailand, sunshine is never too far away!
Top tip – If you are considering travelling abroad for cosmetic dental whitening treatment it’s worth considering the finer details like
‘Can I get access to over-the-counter medications easily?’
Or, ‘Is my accommodation suitable enough for me to be able to recover comfortably?’
Finally, we need to talk about treatment timescales…
Let’s be honest, most people who consider undergoing teeth whitening in Thailand are unlikely to fly nine plus hours for just for one speedy procedure. While a minority may decide to squeeze a quick teeth whitening treatment into their vacation, many others will decide to undertake a series of complex dental restorations in one go, to save money.
The problem with this is that people who undergo multiple dental treatments abroad tend to utilise their two week vacation time, the same way as they might a real vacation. Unfortunately, certain types of procedure should never be rushed and teeth may need sufficient time to heal in between treatments. This can vary from person to person and case to case. As a result, a couple of weeks may not be long enough to fully recover before flying back.
Top tip – If you are considering travelling abroad for complex or multiple dental treatments, then think about booking an open-ended ticket with the idea that you fly back when everything is okay. This way you’re less likely to run into problems.
So there you have it… 3 important factors to take into consideration.
If you do feel that after weighing up the pros and cons, the risks of undergoing teeth whitening in Thailand outweigh any financial gains, then you might want to consider having your teeth whitened back home.
Here at Randwick Smiles, we offer our patients the latest Opalescence and PolaDay teeth whitening treatments. In the form of customised take-home kits, they are designed to be worn in the comfort of your own home. So if you want a cost-effective way to achieve a brighter, whiter smile without the hassle of a 9-hour flight, then contact our experienced team today.
Call us on (02) 8188 4625 to make an appointment or book online.