Lately people call my practice, e mail or visit me for an initial consultation expressing major concerns about the prices of dental implants.
Talking to them, i realize that in Athens most implants cost somewhere between 1000 to 2000 Euros for the placement and their restoration. What causes such a huge difference in price? How can a patient decide the dentist to treat him or her, if the cost is so different between them?
Let's talk about prices then. The final cost of a dental implant takes under consideration the price of the implant and its parts, the lab fee and the dentist's fee.
The first important factor is the cost of the implant and its prosthetic parts. Dentists in Greece buy the parts from the local rep of the implant company, that is located abroad. We can use two types of implants. The expensive ones that are being produced by implant companies like Nobelcare, Straumann, 3i , Astra, Dentsply Friadent have been the best in the area of dental implants and they have been supporting all the dental research that exists today. These brands actually move the implant science forward. These implants have literature support and of course they cost more than the alternative, the cheap ones. Cheap implants come from companies with no scientific literature to support them and no past in customer service.
The dental technician's fee is another important factor. Usually in Greece the dental technician charges the dentist for the modification of the implant prosthetic parts and the fabrication of the crown that is placed on the top. Lately, some of them reduce the prices due to the financial crisis.The experience and the quality of the final product though differentiates the prices a lab technician charges. The more experienced and knowledgeable the technician is, the more he charges the dentists.
Regarding the dentist now. The truth is that dentists are not merchants, we provide services and their quality may differ significantly from one to the other. There are dentists that have attended a two days seminar and started to place implants and there are others that have spend years in dental schools for graduate studies that have been financed by themselves. Who is the best?You judge. Does the better educated dentist have the right to charge more for a dental implant?You decide.
The price in the end is being formed by the cost of the dental implant, the quality of the lab technician and the experience and education of the dentist.
The most significant element according to me is the quality. The dentists control the market pretty well.Nobody would pay a lot of money for an implant that is not of excellent quality or a dental technician that simply asks for it without being able to provide the best possible prosthesis. The biggest part of the cost is being controlled by the dentist and as long as you have found an honorable dentist these factors have already been taken care for you.
In the end you have to trust your dentist. Make sure that you ask a few questions before making your final decisions. Find out where your dentist was educated about dental implants and the type of implants he or she is going in place in your mouth.Don't forget that your dentist can provide you with a written statement of the type of implants and the treatment you had.
Last but not least, remember that you usually get what you are paying for.
Until next time, keep smiling...