Dental tourism – buyer beware

Letters to the Editor (The Guardian)
Send to a friend

Send this article to a friend.


Dental associations are concerned about people travelling outside their province and even to foreign destinations for treatment. Consumers of health care should be informed and we are afraid they are not.

For example, I hope everyone knows that most high end dental procedures, including implants, crowns, veneers and overdentures, are available on P.E.I. from our local GPs and specialists.

Anyone considering these options should know what the risks are, especially if a lower cost for your care plus a holiday trip to a foreign location is your only criteria .

Cheap treatment in Mexico is not surprising when you understand that dentists’ licences, regulation of clinics, education criteria, training of assistants, proper equipment, supplies, waste disposal, sterilization standards, and on and on, are all very different than in Canada. These requirements, enforced by government to protect you, increases costs. Our dentists must have malpractice insurance should something untoward happen. That may not be required nor is any other recourse available offshore. I think if you can’t drink their water — sterilization could be a problem.

Everything could be trouble free if you are lucky and have a well-trained professional — but when you do complete dental care outside the province,  even if  done in Atlantic Canada,  when complications arise after, are you prepared to travel back for treatment? Will you have to return for maintenance and assessment? You may have no choice, as dentists who did not provide these treatments, may not willingly accept the responsibility for ongoing care. They may not even agree to maintain the teeth or prosthetics involved because offuture liability.

Having reviewed dental cases from across Canada, I canassure Islanders that they receive care from some of the best dental professionals anywhere. Most practices accept new patients, and there is no need to leave P.E.I. to access any level of dental care. Much safer, especially if there are complications during or after the procedure.

Discuss treatment you may be considering with your local dentist and save yourself a trip.

Dr. Brian Barrett,

executive director,

Dental Association of P.E.I.

Geographic location: P.E.I., Atlantic Canada, Mexico

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Thanks for voting!

Top of page