Health & Lifestyle

I paid £3,000 to get my teeth done in Turkey, now I look like a shark

A model claims he was left looking like a ‘shark’ after flying to Turkey to get his teeth done.

Jack James, from Manchester, wanted to fix his crooked teeth in order to look ‘better on camera’.

But unable to afford a procedure in the UK, the desperate 22-year-old spent £3,000 on getting veneers in Istanbul last September. 

Upon returning to the UK, Mr James was initially happy with the results and boasted that they ‘looked good’.

Yet in May, he suddenly struggled to floss and soon experienced bleeding gums and ‘terrible breath’. He also claims his mouth started to ‘pus and leak’.

Jack James, from Manchester, decided to fix his crooked teeth in order to look 'better on camera'. But unable to afford the high cost of dentistry in the UK, the desperate 22-year-old spent £3,000 on surgery in Istanbul last September

Jack James, from Manchester, decided to fix his crooked teeth in order to look ‘better on camera’. But unable to afford the high cost of dentistry in the UK, the desperate 22-year-old spent £3,000 on surgery in Istanbul last September

Mr James said: 'I decided to get my teeth done to look better on camera.' 'They looked good until they started to bleed and hurt. They started to puss and leak. My breath stunk.' (Pictured before he had the veneers fitted in Turkey)

Mr James said: ‘I decided to get my teeth done to look better on camera.’ ‘They looked good until they started to bleed and hurt. They started to puss and leak. My breath stunk.’ (Pictured before he had the veneers fitted in Turkey)

This graphic shows how a tooth is shaved down slightly to make room for a thin veneer

This graphic shows how a tooth is shaved down slightly to make room for a thin veneer

An emergency dentist appointment in Manchester confirmed he had an infection, in the form of an abscess. 

Mr James claims his dentist said his teeth were ‘a mess’ and told him it would cost up to £20,000 to fix. 

Describing his horrifying ordeal, he said: ‘When they took the veneers out I saw they had shaved my teeth down so much. 

‘I looked like a shark. It was like something out of a horror movie.’

Unsure of what to do, Mr James contacted the clinic in Turkey for help, however ‘they were adamant it wasn’t their fault’, he said.

He added: ‘They said I’d have to pay again to get it fixed.’

Quoted £4,500 by the same clinic — a quarter of the price expected in the UK — he decided to return to Istanbul this month to have the veneers removed. He was given a new set.

He said: ‘They took all my teeth and the abscess out and put temporary teeth in.’

One of Mr James’ new veneers – a porcelain cover that fits over a tooth – has already fallen out, leaving him with a gap in his teeth.

Mr James is now warning others to do their research before heading abroad for dentistry treatments.

He said: ‘I feel so upset with myself. I feel like plucking all my teeth out.’

An emergency dentist appointment in Manchester confirmed he had suffered an infection and his teeth were 'a mess' - but he was told it would cost up to £20,000 to fix. When the dentist took his veneers out he realised he was left looking 'like a shark'

An emergency dentist appointment in Manchester confirmed he had suffered an infection and his teeth were ‘a mess’ – but he was told it would cost up to £20,000 to fix. When the dentist took his veneers out he realised he was left looking ‘like a shark’

After having a new set of veneers fitted, he returned to the UK earlier this month. But while brushing his teeth one of his veneers - a crown - has already fallen out, leaving him with a gap in his teeth

After having a new set of veneers fitted, he returned to the UK earlier this month. But while brushing his teeth one of his veneers – a crown – has already fallen out, leaving him with a gap in his teeth

Unsure of what to do, Mr James contacted the clinic in Turkey for help, however 'they were adamant it wasn't their fault,' he said. He added: 'They said I'd have to pay again to get it fixed.' Quoted £4,500 by the clinic - a quarter of the price expected in the UK - he decided to return to Istanbul in June to have the veneers removed

Unsure of what to do, Mr James contacted the clinic in Turkey for help, however ‘they were adamant it wasn’t their fault,’ he said. He added: ‘They said I’d have to pay again to get it fixed.’ Quoted £4,500 by the clinic – a quarter of the price expected in the UK – he decided to return to Istanbul in June to have the veneers removed

For decades, Brits have been warned against seeking cheaper surgery in places like Turkey, Eastern Europe, or South East Asia.

Turkey is not inherently more dangerous than other surgical tourism hotspots.

But cheap flights between it and the UK — as well as the rise of the trend combining cosmetic surgery with a holiday — have made it one of the leading destinations for Brits looking to go under the knife. 

This is especially the case for dentistry, with millions of Brits struggling to see their own dentist. The combination has sparked the ‘Turkey teeth’ trend.

One of the most common procedures offered in Turkey, made popular by stars such as Katie Price and Love Island’s Jack Fincham, involves filing down natural teeth to pegs then replacing them with crowns or veneers.

In recent months, desperate Brits have had to resort to using shoelaces and pliers to pull out their rotting teeth.

How much does NHS dentistry cost?

There are 3 NHS charge bands. But NHS dental charges increased by 8.5 per cent in April.

This is the largest single jump since the current system of charges was introduced in 2006.

Band 1: £25.80

Covers an examination, diagnosis and advice. If necessary, it also includes X-rays, a scale and polish, and planning for further treatment.

Band 2: £70.70 

Covers everything included in Band 1, plus additional treatment, such as fillings, root canal treatment and removing teeth (extractions).

Band 3: £306.80 

Covers all treatment included in Bands 1 and 2, plus more complex procedures, such as crowns, dentures and bridges.

For comparison, check-ups can cost between £20 and £120 at private dentists, according to the consumer group Which?.

Dentures and bridges can also cost up to £2,520, it says.

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