Oral health is very important for quality of life, which is why SUS created the dental implant system.

So read on and find out how this program works and who is entitled to it.

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How the SUS implant works and who is entitled to it

Everyone knows that dental implants or any other type of dental treatment can be very expensive. But did you know that it's possible to get a dental implant free of charge through SUS (Sistema Único de Saúde)?

That's exactly what you've read, you can have this dental treatment free of charge and smile again with peace of mind. Brazil currently has a large number of dentists, around 300,000 professionals, according to the Federal Council of Dentistry, as of 2018.

However, it's important to note that having many dentists doesn't mean that all Brazilians have access, as many can't afford to pay. With this in mind, the SUS created the Smiling Brazil Program, so that people have access to a dentist. See below for more details on this subject!

What is the Smiling Brazil Program?

First of all, it's very important that you know what the Smiling Brazil Program is, what its objectives are and how it came about. Created in 2004, the Smiling Brazil Program aimed to offer all Brazilian citizens dental treatment.

But it's important to remember that it was only in 2011 that dental implants were included in this program. Therefore, as the Brazilian Dental Association recommends that people go to the dentist at least twice a year, and not everyone can, the Smiling Brazil project was created.

In this way, the project aims to ensure that the Brazilian population has oral health, since having oral health provides a better quality of life due to the avoidance of pain and even improves a person's self-esteem.

What procedures does SUS offer?

Now that you know how the program works and what its purpose is, it's time to find out what procedures SUS offers free of charge. SUS offers many dental treatments, including the basic ones, such as cleaning, removing cavities, extractions and much more.

In addition to these basic items mentioned above, SUS offers procedures that are considered more expensive, such as restorations, wisdom tooth extractions, biopsies, endodontics, dental prostheses on implants, installation of braces, osteointegrated dental implants, tartar removal, orthognathic surgery and many others.

However, it's important to know that not all municipalities offer all the treatments mentioned above. Although this is a right guaranteed by the state, each municipality is free to decide how it wants to distribute the money it receives for this purpose.

It is therefore very common for municipalities to only pay for basic treatments. Then, as not all cities offer the most expensive treatments because they don't have a qualified professional, you may be referred to another municipality that does have this professional, and have to wait on the waiting list according to the demand in the region at the time.

What is a dental implant?

Before you find out who is entitled, you should know that a dental implant is a part that replaces the old dentures. As the name suggests, what happens is that a piece is implanted in the jawbone to replace lost teeth, and they can be removable or fixed. 

Who is entitled?

Moving on to the most important part, know who is entitled to this dental implant program. As you already know, having access to the services that SUS offers is everyone's right, regardless of skin color, gender, age or social status, but it's important to know that because dental implants are a more expensive procedure, not all cities offer this treatment.

Therefore, the first thing you need to do before requesting this procedure is to check on the town hall's website or directly on site whether this service is offered by the municipality. Then you need to go to the PSF (Posto de Saúde da Família) or UBS (Unidade Básica de Saúde) in your town or neighborhood with your documents, including your ID, SUS card and proof of residence.

With your documents in hand, ask for an assessment with the dentist, after which you will be put on the waiting list, which works in order of urgency, priority, risk and so on. 

It's very important that you pay attention to the calls on your cell phone, as the health department in your municipality will contact you to schedule the procedure. Although it sometimes takes a while to be called, don't give up, as they always call you to carry out the dental implant.