Taking proper care of your teeth doesn’t exactly come easy. Partially because hygiene isn’t exactly a thrilling task, but also because no matter how well you take care of yourself, sometimes you fail.
Some people just have better teeth than others. We’ve been fixing teeth, as a species since before we were even the current species.
Fortunately, we no longer have to stick chunks of pitch and wax in our teeth. We have a whole host of different options for keeping teeth healthy and rebuilding the ones that don’t hold up.
Now, we’ve even got the option of going international with our dental health. Why stick around at home to be gouged by runaway prices when you can take a vacation and get some work done at the same time? With dental work in Costa Rica prices so low, it could be cheaper to take a trip than to go down the street.
Fillings and Cavities
Cavities form when bacteria eat away at enamel and create pits and holes in teeth. Over time these holes can get larger, and ultimately penetrate into the nerve. When this happens they can become very painful and damage can spread under the gum line.
To prevent this, dentists clean the holes of bacteria and damage then replace the gap with a filling designed to fill the space and add strength to the tooth.
Not all fillings are created the same, and the skill of the dentist to remove the damage without taking too much of the healthy tooth can be key.
Maintaining proper dental hygiene will not only reduce the frequency in which fillings become necessary but will increase the longevity of the filling itself. Fillings may get dislodged if food particles get wedged between the filling and the tooth.
Getting good dental work doesn’t have to come at a high price. Price doesn’t reflect skill and quality, only perception. When getting dental work in Costa Rica prices vary but remain lower than US equivalents for the same procedures and materials.
Scope of Dental Work in Costa Rica Prices
Dental procedures serve a few different purposes. Most importantly they serve to protect teeth. Sometimes this can be accomplished through cleaning and maintenance, other procedures have to shore up damage and reinforce existing structures.
One of the reasons that prices in Costa Rica can be cheaper is the lack of insurance and government regulation manipulating the prices. The quality remains the same, but dental work in Costa Rica prices benefit from lower markup.
A procedure will cover the price of cleaning up the cavity and the filling. In some rare cases where a previous filling needs to be replaced the price may go up, removing fillings takes more effort than putting one in.
Fillings provided cover the same scope of care and range of products as the States as well. the following list reflects common filling materials and their usages.
The technical name for silver fillings (though they may be more silver in color and less in the material), amalgam range in price from $120-$180 in the US. Prices in Costa Rica trend closer to 30-60.
Amalgam fillings are the least desirable fillings because they are the most visible and noticeably artificial. They have an average lifespan of 3-10 years before needing to be replaced.
Discuss any metal allergies with your dentist as some amalgam fillings may not be suitable for all patients. Though, with the affordability of dental work in Costa Rica prices, other options last longer and look better.
Composite resins match the color of teeth to provide protection and cosmetic effects. Dental work in Costa Rica prices these fillings $50-70 for front teeth and around $10 more for back teeth (because of size). Dentists that specialize in composite fillings do a better job matching color and increase the longevity of the resin.
Composite resins, like amalgam fillings, last between 3-10 years before replacement procedures may be needed. Drawbacks of composite resins include staining from harsh substances such as coffee or tobacco and chipping from hard substances.
Advances in composites continue to push the longevity forward. These filling combine the best of price, aesthetic, and longevity while also being the quickest to set and requiring no follow-up like the next two options.
Porcelain fillings might be a misnomer. These procedures may be called inlays or onlays because they attach to the outside of teeth, rather than filling a cavity. Porcelain runs between the $400-500 range, even in Costa Rica with prices reaching up to nearly $2,000 in the States.
Porcelain procedures require molds to be taken for shaping and then bonding. This requires multiple procedures, which also increases costs overall.
Porcelain fillings have a longevity of almost 20 years, but they can be difficult to remove, which can cause damage to the tooth on a second replacement.
Prices for gold fillings closely resemble those of porcelain. Also like porcelain, the fillings need to have molds cast first and then installed on a subsequent visit. Gold fillings also last for 20 years or more.
Gold fillings may also be installed in the form of inlays or onlays. Some people value the aesthetic appeal of gold fillings, while others find them gaudy. They may not appeal to everyone, but they certainly do have a value for their quality.
Patients with sensitive gums may have no other choice but to use gold fillings, as they are hypoallergenic and won’t irritate work close to the gumline or deep in a tooth.
Now that you have a firm understanding of the procedures, materials, and prices there is no reason not to get yourself scheduled for dental work in Costa Rica.
Contact us for more information or to check our scheduling. Try to keep in mind that with travel, you will want to arrive the day before, not day of a scheduled procedure. Likewise, leave a day after any scheduled procedure to allow for emergencies or delays.
Nothing beats the feeling of coming back from a vacation getaway with some renewed and healthy teeth.