Dental Tourism: Procedures, Risks, and Cost of Dental Implant Abroad

Let’s cut to the chase. Getting a dental implant in Australia from a highly recommended dentist could cost an arm and a leg. Yeah, no kidding.

Yet dental implants seem to be all the rage for people with missing teeth or oral issues. Most have turned to “dental tourism,” a holiday, for economical dental treatments.

On the surface, it’s harmless—especially for your wallet. But are there any legal concerns or risks to be aware of?


Our guide focuses on dental tourism, its benefits, and what you should know before embarking on a dental holiday. Dig into this hub of information for more insight!

What is Dental Tourism & Do People Consider this Option?

Dental tourism simply means traveling for a dental procedure. The selling point is the allure of taking a trip and getting dental procedures cheaper than usual.

Why would anyone want to embark on a dental holiday?

Economic Benefits

Like we mentioned earlier, the main benefit is that it saves costs. Having a dental implant could put a financial strain on you.

And if your dental issues have been affecting your mental health, you are probably dying to find an alternative. Dental holidays come to the rescue in situations like that. It makes dental care accessible to a larger population.

Access to Advanced Dental Care

Sometimes, it exposes you to more advanced dental care at little cost. Most countries famous for dental tourism invest heavily in state-of-the-art facilities to enhance their services. It’s like getting an advanced option without the extra costs.

Reduced Waiting Times

The lengthy wait time accompanying specific procedures in their home countries makes people opt for dental holidays. The idea of a fast treatment is appealing, understandably so. Most times, patients can’t wait to fix their teeth.

What does Dental Implant Entail?

A dental implant varies depending on the patient’s unique condition. But generally, it involves installing an implant in the patient’s jaw bones to hold an artificial tooth called the crown. These implants don’t cause any harm and are typically made of titanium.

When Should You Get a Dental Implant?

Most people who get dental implants have the following issues:

  • Missing teeth impedes speech.
  • Oral health issues
  • You don’t want dentures
  • Missing or broken teeth

Popular Destinations for Dental Implants Abroad

Below are the most famous locations for dental tourism worldwide.

1. Bali, Indonesia

  • Pros: Accredited Indonesian dentists, state-of-the-art facilities.
  • Cost Estimate: While prices vary for clinics, it costs AUD 1400 for a tooth on average. The cost of a flight may be around 500-600 while accommodation could cost about 1000.

2. India

  • Pros: World-class dental treatments at competitive prices.
  • Costs: Dental implants average $600, and all-on-four treatments are around $6,100, representing a 70% saving compared to Australian prices​​.

3. Thailand

  • Pros: Renowned for its modern dental clinics and tourism appeal.
  • Costs: Dental implants cost, on average, $600 per tooth, which is significantly cheaper than in Australia.

These countries have stood out for years because they offer quality, affordability, and accessibility. But are they completely safe options? That brings us to the risks of dental holidays.

What are the Risks of Dental Tourism?

As you may have guessed, dental tourism isn’t all sunshine and roses. It has some significant risks to be wary of:

Potential Complications

Going to a country you aren’t familiar with for a procedure may seem harmless. But things could go wrong.

Dental implants have specific post-operative care procedures.  Can you keep up with the post-care process?

You may also encounter language barriers or a highly substandard procedure. While thorough research may save you from all these possibilities, you must be extra careful.

ADA Doesn’t Support Dental Tourism

Australia Dental Association isn’t entirely conformable to the notion of abroad dental care. In fact, most of the concerns, according to the Deputy Chairman of the oral health committee, are health safety.

Dental tourism may lead to complications in the long run. The savings you benefit from it might eventually save your life if complications arise.

No Regulation Over Dental Material

Sometime in 2021, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) issued 21 infringement notices. A Canberra dental practice imported, supplied, and implanted dental materials not registered on the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG).

This shows how regulated and safe dental implants are in Australia.

But we can’t say the same for dental practices abroad. Without regulations or compliance, you may become a victim of cheap dental materials.

Traveling Back After Surgery

It’s risky to travel back immediately after your surgery due to blood clots. You may need to stay back for a while to avoid health complications.

However, staying back will attract extra costs for upkeep and accommodation. In the long run, you may accrue more expenses during dental tourism.

Poor Hygiene Practices

The hygiene standards abroad may vary slightly from Australia’s. You need to be wary of the hygiene practices to avoid infections.

For instance, every patient should have a new set of instruments in sterile pouches. They should also clean nonoperating areas to prevent contamination.

No Access to Previous Medical Record

Medical procedures and subsequent post-care should hinge on your previous medical record. Since you are getting dental care abroad, the doctor might not have all the necessary information. That could put your life at risk or cause more significant health problems.

Does this mean you can’t get quality health care abroad? Not at all. Some clinics overseas are top-notch and always work with quality materials.

Legal Recourse

In cases where you suffer some harm because of negligence, seeking legal recourse may be tricky. It’s way easier to initiate legal action when you receive treatment in your country.

Dealing with foreign laws and legal processes is a complication that many people would rather avoid.


Most of the time, insurance companies don’t cover dental care costs in foreign countries. Hence, you’ll need to pay out of pocket.


Dental holidays cater to patients seeking quality dental implants for a fraction of the cost. They also allow you to enjoy and experience new cultures, food, or people. However, the legal risks and health risks shouldn’t be ignored.

For Aussies, especially, the alternative to dental tourism is opting for more affordable dental practitioners.

Most times, you can rest assured that your safety is guaranteed. However, you won’t deal with the risks of traveling to a foreign country. Let’s not forget that some of these clinics abroad may use subpar dental material for you.

The best way to avoid this? Research top-notch dental clinics that are relatively affordable in Australia.