‘Dentist to the stars’ on dangers of travelling abroad for dental surgery
Cosmetic dentist to the stars Dr Robbie Hughes talks to Kevin Palmer about the dangers of dental tourism, his plush new Dublin clinic and working his magic on some of the world’s biggest footballers
Some of the biggest football stars in England’s Premier League have put their cosmetic dentistry in the hands of Dr Robbie Hughes — and now he has set his sights on conquering Ireland.
Liverpool greats Jurgen Klopp, Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino are among the big names who have passed through the doors of his plush Dental Excellence clinic in Liverpool.
With his dentistry empire booming in the UK, Robbie has picked this moment to branch out with a new clinic in Dublin, which opened its doors earlier this month.
The horror stories of cosmetic dentistry calamities emerging from ill-conceived trips to Turkey for cut-price treatment have shaken the credibility of the industry.
Yet Robbie and his team of highly qualified professionals are offering a very different service, and that explains why he has become the market leader.
He tells Magazine+: “The stories we see of people travelling abroad and having bad experiences with cosmetic dentistry show you cannot cut corners in this business.
“You can get cheaper treatment by travelling to somewhere like Turkey but the health and well-being of the patient might not always be the priority.
“The modern view of cosmetic dentistry has changed. People are open to looking at this as an option, and we are delighted to be at the forefront of the business.
“My ambition when I started the business in 2008 was to be at the cutting edge of technology and provide an exceptional patient experience.
“If you go to Turkey and then have to fix the damage that has been done, it can cost a lot more than it would have done if you’d had the treatment in a clinic like ours in the first place.
“Our aim is to motivate and educate our patients at the start of their journey as that allows them to make the right decisions.
“There is no one-size-fits-all approach in dentistry, and unfortunately, people are making poor decisions to travel abroad for treatment that can fall apart four or five years down the road.
“You need to understand the psychology of the patient, so you can provide a good journey through their treatment.
“What we can deliver is customisation in their results and peace of mind that they will get the outcome they want in the most cost-effective way. I’ve very proud of the brand and team we have built.”
The football stars who put their trust in Robbie and his Dental Excellence team have helped drive awareness of the brand’s work, and promote a positive image of cosmetic dentistry.
“We worked with our first footballer about 10 years ago,” continues the Liverpool- born businessman. “Lucas Leiva and Martin Škrtel had some work done with us, and then Lucas opened the door to other Brazilian players. After that, Roberto Firmino and Philippe Coutinho had some work done with us.
“Their smile makeovers were very noticeable and caught the limelight and the knock-on effect was, we built up a trust in the football community.
“It isn’t just with Liverpool players but with players and managers from other clubs,” he continues.
“Some players who have had treatment with us have more noticeable treatment than others, and that is what we do.
“Our job is to provide customised options for our patients and the players have helped that part of my business grow naturally.”
Dublin was the next natural step for Robbie to open a clinic and he has found the perfect location in the heart of the Irish capital.
“We have had a lot of interest from Ireland in recent years and we moved closer to the airport in Liverpool as a lot of people were flying over to have treatment,” he reveals.
“So the natural step was to remove some barriers for Irish patients and put a clinic in the heart of the capital city.
“We have found a great spot on Grafton Street. We are just on Stephen’s Green, with the buskers outside singing their songs.
“There is a great vibe around us. I love watching the world go by there. It’s a special place to be.
“I’m really excited to see where we can take it and hopefully we can provide a great service to the Irish people.”
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