As the organizer of a medical tourism consultancy, I would like to respond in the following open letter to certain and sometimes justified articles that have appeared in recent weeks about dentistry abroad.
Let me start by saying that a complication is always possible! No righteous doctor or dentist can guarantee the patient that he will never have a complication. We therefore inform our customers in the medical sector about this.
If a complication occurs with a Belgian doctor in Belgium, the patient will accept it more easily than when this happens with a foreign doctor abroad. Then the patient will quickly have the reaction: “You see, I should never have had it done abroad!”…
Over the past 9 years we have built up a strong reputation because we always strive for expertise, quality and above all responsibility with our dentists in Turkey. Let’s not forget that Istanbul is a very modern city with university hospitals of the same high standard as Belgian hospitals that often exchange with European doctors to share their expertise with each other.
In Belgium we have the great luxury that our health system is at a very high level. It would therefore be foolish to say that Turkish dentists are better than Belgian dentists. Honesty compels us to say that there are good and less good doctors in Belgium, Turkey, the US, Sweden, and all other parts of the world!
When people think of “dentistry in Turkey” they quickly imagine that they will end up somewhere behind the Souk, in a back room of an apartment and that they will be cheated by a Turk. This reputation is due to “medical tourism” to Bodrum, Antalya, Side, etc… where quacks frequently trick the gullible customers. If it is disappointing in Turkey and afterwards you can’t go to anyone with whom this dentist works, it is indeed very annoying!
For example, we have all read an article about young people in their twenties with perfectly healthy teeth who then have “dracula teeth” filed in Turkey to have a Hollywood smile rather than their own teeth that are not 100% straight. These are things that we as a company and certainly our dentists do not support!
So if you are looking for a dentist on your own and you start googling “dental Turkey” you will get a whole list of several exclusive websites. When do you know when you end up with a good dentist or not?
That is why it is important for us (and other self-respecting organisations) that the patient first consults a dentist in Belgium, with whom we cooperate, for a full oral examination. In this way we can see what the best and responsible options are in consultation with our Turkish dentist.
We receive daily dental photos from people who have taken them with their mobile phones…. Of course this doesn’t work like that. Everything starts with an X-ray picture and an oral examination.
When I started Esthetic-Airlines 9 years ago, it was very important to me to find Belgian dentists who stood behind the story to have dental treatment performed in Istanbul. I must say this was not an easy task. The Belgian dentists who were open to it were afraid of what their colleagues or certain federations linked to Belgian dentists would think.
It is of course only a logical reaction from a Belgian dentist that he or she does not like it when a Belgian patient goes abroad for treatment, while this can also be performed under his roof. In the meantime, we have developed great partnerships with Belgian dentists who know that the procedures in Turkey are performed expertly, with high-quality and European recognized equipment.
Of course it is logical that it is not pleasant for a Belgian (dentist) doctor to solve a complication that has arisen as a result of an intervention abroad (or even in your own country). On the other hand, we have already solved complications of patients (read above: complications are always possible!) who have had their treatment performed by Belgian dentists. Whether to continue helping patients who are in the middle of their treatment plan had to stop because the costs were too high. For example, we often experience that people have already had their implants placed in Belgium and have already paid thousands of euros for this, but where they can no longer have the crown work placed because it turns out to be financially no longer feasible.
We often get people here at our office with quotes between 20,000 to 30,000 € for implants and crowns. Some people have already inquired to borrow for their dental treatment. Speaking for myself, I want to take out a loan for a house, apartment or car but I would be very sorry if I had to borrow to have dental treatment, something that is functional and essential.
If people have enough financial resources, why go abroad for dental treatment? We have the perfect dentists in Belgium.
But if people think these amounts are too high or it’s just not financially possible, please leave us open to look for solutions across the border.
As long as this is done professionally and with the right guidance where all the advantages and possible disadvantages are told in advance. If you have any questions about our approach, you can also request a personal meeting.
With professional regards,