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All-on-4 Dental Implants
Dental implants are an extremely effective long-term solution for missing teeth and offer a solution to commonly experienced denture problems. They are used to replace the root portion of a missing tooth with a titanium implant. The implant is fixed into a pre-drilled socket in the jawbone and a new restoration is then attached to restore full function to the tooth.
All-on-4 dental implants is a revolutionary treatment, which allows a whole set of new teeth (known as an arch) to be supported by just 4 implants per arch. The All-on-4 implants are positioned at precise angles to provide optimum support for the arch and complete stabilisation for your dentures.
One full arch of teeth, four dental implants!
To fully understand this remarkable technique for replacing teeth, you should first understand what a dental implant is. An implant is a small titanium screw that fits inside your jawbone and replaces the root-part of a missing tooth. Minor surgery is required to insert the implants. Once the implant is in place, a crown is attached to give you a highly realistic looking and functional prosthetic tooth.
Here’s where it gets really interesting: You do not need a dental implant for each and every one of your missing teeth. All you need is four precisely placed implants on the top of your mouth, and four on the bottom, to restore your full smile. That’s the beauty of the full arch. And because the implant is made of titanium, it has the unique ability to fuse to living bone and function as part of it. So eventually, the dental implant becomes part of the jawbone and serves as a strong, long-lasting foundation for your new teeth.
Besides ensuring that your implants are permanently fixed in place, this bone fusion has another important benefit: it can prevent future bone loss in the jaw. This helps to maintain a more youthful facial structure and better oral health. But perhaps the biggest surprise about the full arch is how quickly it can transform your life.
The All-on-4 dental implant treatment is also promised by many dental practices as the ‘Teeth in a day’ treatment, assuming you would need only 1 day for the whole process. In reality, any treatment where dental implants are involved, comes with the biggest risk of all, which is implant failure.
There are more than one reason why implant failure can happen but not allowing osseintegration to take place is the most common reason. Let’s dig into this a little more:
A dental implant is placed in the bone to replace the root portion of the tooth. When this happens, it takes multiple months for osseointegration to happen. Osseointegration derives from the Greek word, osteon (bone), and the Latin word, integrate (to make whole). The term refers to the direct structural and functional connection between living bone and the surface of a load-bearing artificial implant. This means that the bone fuses to the implant to become stable enough to hold a tooth on it. Unfortunately, this is a process that cannot be sped up. The process takes around 2 to 4 months to be completed. Once osseointegration has finished, your dental implant can have a tooth attached and you can start chewing on the implant without problems.
This means that should you choose to have teeth attached to the implants immideately after the latter being placed (which technically is possible) you still have the risk that the implant will fail and fall out because you have not allowed for the osseintegration to take place.
Since most of our patients travel from abroad our dental professionals choose to perform the All-on-4 treatment in the classic way. This means that you will have to visit us twice with a healing time of 2 to 4 months in between each visit.
Placing All-on-4 dental implants is a surgical procedure. Depending on the patient, general anesthesia may be used to achieve total unconsciousness. Most patients only require local anesthesia and/or IV sedatives to keep them pain-free and calm during the procedure.
The All-on-4 dental implants procedure:
- The diseased or infected teeth, gum tissue, or jaw bone tissue will be removed as needed.
- Titanium dental implants are placed in the jaw bone to provide anchors for the fabricated teeth plate.
- Incisions are sutured, and the mouth is cleaned.
- The patient will wear a temporary denture plate on the implants for up to a 4 months while the jaws and gums heal fully around the implanted titanium screws.
- Once recovery is complete, a custom-fit permanent denture plate will be placed on the 4 implants.
By only placing 4 implants within the bone structure, patients typically experience a shorter recovery time than traditional dental implant procedures. This procedure results in a more youthful appearance and teeth that can be used exactly like natural teeth. They can be brushed and cleaned the same ways natural teeth are.
The goal of an All-on-4 dental implant system is to provide a full smile restoration with natural results, at lower costs, with high success rates for patients who are missing all or most of their teeth.
All-on-4 dental implants are unlike traditional implants because 4 implants are used to sustain one whole arch, when usually between 6 and 10 implants are needed to maintain an arch. All-on-4 dental implants are able to sustain an arch because of the angles the implants are positioned at, with the back implants positioned at a 45-degree angle rather than a 90-degree angle, which helps to lock the implants together. As only 4 implants per arch are needed the procedure is quicker and less invasive.
All-on-4 implants have many benefits. As just 4 implants are required to sustain a whole arch the procedure is quicker and less invasive and fewer visits to the dentist are required. There is also rarely any need for bone grafting and All-on-4 implants create an attractive aesthetic, as well as restoring optimum function to the mouth.
Health is more of a deciding factor for All-on-4 treatment than age. If you are healthy enough to have teeth extracted, generally you will also be healthy enough for All-on-4 implants. We will undertake a thorough assessment of your mouth, jawbone and teeth to ensure you will receive the very best results.