A Quiet Week in the Desert + Some Mexican Dental

February 11-16
I keep calling it Mexican Dental, but the reality is that having dental work done in Mexico is really no different than having dental work done in the U.S. Oh wait…expect it’s soooo much better! Cheaper prices, more efficiency, less wait time, and less pressure to pay for extra add-ons (this was my first dentist visit where I didn’t get shammed into having unnecessary x-rays simply because it had been a while) made this a simple and (almost) enjoyable experience.

Los Algodones, MX
A typical street corner in Los Algodones

We don’t have dental insurance which means we have to shell out at least $100 just to get our teeth cleaned. Add in anything more like a root canal, crowns or an implant and you’re talking big bucks. So we went across the border to Los Algodones, Mexico to save some money. I got a cleaning for only $35 (it was my first cleaning in almost 10 years and I had no cavities – take that dentist shammers), and Tim got the first part of his tooth implant for around $1,500.

Sani Dental Group
The waiting room at the Sani Dental Group

But you know what, even if the price was exactly the same, I would still consider going to Mexico for dental work. Not only were the staff and doctors all professional and competent, but the whole process for astonishingly efficient. Take Tim’s implant for example. Instead of having an initial consultation with the dentist, another appointment with a specialist for another consultation, and then another appointment to have the actual work done, it all happened in the span of a few hours. He made an appointment a few days prior, showed up early to fill out paperwork, had x-rays taken, consulted with the doctor about treatment options, and then had the first part of the implant installed. Altogether, I think we were in Mexico for 4-5 hours.

I’m not going to lay out all the details about dentistry in Los Algodones, but I will say that with that with the healthcare system in the U.S. getting more expensive and more mired in bureaucracy, I can see us using the services of our friendly neighbors to the south on a more regular basis.

If you want to learn more about dental work in Los Algodones, Nina does a great job of explaining it in her two blog posts:
Getting Dental Work In Mexico Part I – Clarifying Myths & Facts
Getting Dental Work In Mexico Part II – Our Los Algodones Experience.

In an effort to be close to the border we boondocked off American Girl Mine Rd. in Winterhaven, CA. This is a very large, very well-known area with tons of open space for numerous RVs. We easily found a semi-secluded spot and settled in for a quiet week.

American Girl Mine Road
Our spot on American Girl Mine Rd.

After six weeks in the Sonoran desert, it was a bit of a let down to arrive at a place that is nearly devoid of plant life, but we managed to stay busy with daily walks and bike rides on the many dirt roads that wind through the desert.

American Girl Mine Road
Missing my cactus friends
Heart Pizza
His & Hers Valentine’s Day pizza
I’ve been waiting at least a month for this tiny flower to open

We didn’t know it at the time, but this would be our last week in the desert for the foreseeable future. It was time for a change and at the last minute we changed course and headed to the coast! Ocean pictures coming soon…

Desert Sunset
One last desert sunset

Food Storage Containers

These airtight food storage containers keep food fresh and my pantry organized. Their cube shape is perfect for stacking, the lids are tight, and the plastic is durable even when they tumble on the floor. They come as a set of three different sizes, or you can buy them individually.


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6 Responses to “A Quiet Week in the Desert + Some Mexican Dental”


  1. Jeff

    When our local dentist went up $125 per cleaning, we knew it was time to look elsewhere. Living in San Diego, TJ was an obvious choice – we now pay $60 plus $10 for the trolley ride ($30 + $5 ea). Notr – Unlike Algodones, TJ does require an FMM to enter.
    Enjoy the coast!

  2. Paul Downes

    In total agreement with your observations regarding dental in Mexico. We visited for the first time and had our teeth cleaned three weeks ago whilst we were camped at AGM. It will definitely be a yearly occurrence for us in the future. Lovely little bustling town to wonder around and then a return to the amazing sunsets and quiet at AMG. Always enjoy your blog posts guys!

    • Amanda

      It really is a convenient setup, isn’t it? Happy that you also had a good experience.

  3. Debra

    I guess we flip flopped locations . I was camped at American Girl Mine a couple weeks ago and went to Algodones. Now I’m in Ajo and going down to Organ Pipe next week. Looks like you got a nice site back on the wash. It is awfully barren there though.

    Enjoy the coast!

    • Amanda

      We did flip flop! Hope you enjoy your time at Organ Pipe. Such a magical place!


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