If you’re unhappy with your smile but feel that the dental treatments you need like cosmetic dentistry or dental implants won’t fit your budget, you might have searched for alternative solutions like dental tourism. Here in Chula Vista, we’re just a few miles north of the border. With such close proximity to Mexico, you might feel tempted to make a day trip to Tijuana to get cosmetic dentistry or dental implants to save money. Although tons of dentists in Mexico advertise amazing prices and results, you should err on the side of caution for several reasons.


One of the biggest reasons why you shouldn’t visit a dentist in Mexico to save money is because there will be communication limitations. Unless you’re fluent in Spanish, don’t expect to understand everything your dentist or their team has to say. Of course, there will be dentists that speak fluent English. This doesn’t mean their forms or everyone on their staff will.

In comparison, a patient visiting a dentist in the U.S. can be sure his or her problem will be understood. This is because it’s required by law for a medical provider to provide translation services if needed.

Safety Regulations

Hygiene and safety standards are not uniform across countries. A dentist in Mexico might see 10 times the amount of patients that a US dentist might see per day. This means they spend significantly less time with you. If they’re short on time, they might take shortcuts by not taking all the same safety and hygiene precautions as a US dentist. They also might not pay as much attention to detail if they’re short on time.

Without the same standards as the US, visiting a dentist in Mexico comes with additional risks. They might use outdated techniques, hygiene practices, and technology. Each of these factors can contribute to infections or short-lived results. Without regulations, your dentist in Mexico might prescribe stronger painkillers or sedation dentistry than what is actually necessary.

beautiful view of Mexico beach


Just like safety regulations aren’t the same, so are accreditations. A doctor accredited by a dental association in Mexico doesn’t have the same value as one accredited by the American Dental Association. Their association might not have as rigorous standards such as needed education and training experience. With less training and experience, you risk the results of your dentistry procedures.

Fixing Botched Treatments Isn’t Easy

If your procedure goes wrong, you might have a hard time getting your dentist in Mexico to fix it. Since regulations aren’t the same in Mexico as they are in the US, your dentist might not offer to fix your problem in order to salvage their reputation. You will also have to spend extra time and money traveling back and forth to make things right. There are no guarantees with dental tourism. You might end up spending more time and money traveling back and forth to get dentistry in Mexico than you would to just see a dentist in the US.

Travel Expenses and Time

Another reason why dental tourism might not be right for you is that not all procedures take one visit. For instance, if you’re getting dental implants in Mexico or porcelain veneers, you will require at least two visits to the dental office. Although Tijuana is a short drive away, crossing the border can take hours out of your day. It can also cost you a lot of travel time. If you’re traveling somewhere besides Tijuana, you might have to pay for a hotel and flight depending on where you’re traveling to. With high gas prices and long border crossing times, is it really worth the time and money to travel to Mexico for dentistry?

Mexico Isn’t The Safest Destination

Not only do you risk problems going wrong with a dental procedure, but you also risk being a victim of a crime while you’re in Mexico. Tijuana ranked as one of the most dangerous cities in the world in 2019. Most areas of Mexico have a travel warning due to non-violent and violent crimes. As a tourist, you might become the victim of gang activity, kidnapping, human trafficking, murder, carjacking, robbery, sexual assault, and extortion. 

How To Get The Best Value Dentistry For Your Money

Instead of spending a lot of time and money on traveling to Mexico for dentistry and questionable results, you can get amazing care right here in the US at Irresistible Smiles in Chula Vista Dr. Safarian offers a wide range of dental treatments and an impressive resume of continuing education, experience, and happy patients. Additionally, we will help you find financing options that work for your budget so you can get exceptional care and results without stress.

Contact our Chula Vista dentist today for an appointment by calling (619) 656-6785.