A DALTON man is preparing to fly 6,000 miles - to get his teeth fixed.
Colin Walder, 55, flies out to Thailand on June 10 to undergo dental implant surgery.
It will be carried out in a high-tech modern clinic in Bangkok for £3,000 - less than a quarter of the price he would have to pay in Britain.
He is the latest person from the UK to fly thousands of miles to get health treatment.
Others have gone to India and to the Far East for operations rather than face long waits on the NHS or paying huge bills to go private.
Mr Walder, a former Kirklees councillor, has been told by his dentist that his teeth will have to be extracted because of chronic gum disease.
But his experience of having partial dentures has left him unhappy about the idea of false teeth on a plate.
He consulted dentists about private operations to have dental implants - metal screws inserted into the jawbone to which artificial teeth are attached.
The cost of the treatment here would be about £14,000.
Mr Walder said: "It is not money I have readily available. I inquired about taking some of my pension early, but that was not an option.
"But I married a Thai girl, Sangjan, and she knew there were clinics available in Thailand that may be able to help.
"We located a clinic in Bangkok where all the staff have been trained in the United States and one that is used for medical care by staff at the British Embassy.
"I have spoken to their dentists and they can do exactly the same work for a little over £3,000.
"Now I'm arranging to fly out on June 10 to get the work done"
Mr Walder married Sangjan six weeks ago at Huddersfield Register Office after meeting her in Thailand two years ago on a holiday.
The pair have been regular visitors to the east and have bought a house in the north of Thailand.
"I have spoken to the British Embassy and they have assured me the clinic is very reputable.
"There may be some people who doubt the health care standards in the Far East, but I have been reassured and there is a huge difference in the costs.
"No-one wants to lose all their teeth and I wish I had taken better care of mine.
"However, this is a better option for me".
A spokesman for the British Dental Association said: "Patients are free to choose the kind of treatment they want and where they want to receive it.
"We would urge people con sidering a trip abroad to bear in mind the need to have continuing care and that they may have to seek more treatment in the future."