Dental implant treatment has altered the face of dentistry over the last 20 years for patients and implant dentists alike. They have been a miracle in replacing lost teeth, whether it be a single tooth, multiple teeth, or an anchor for a denture. As dental implant technology has developed, new dental technology advancements and techniques have matured. One of those newer dental processes includes All On 4 Dental Implants.
This dental procedure allows for the placement of four dental implants and the restoration to be placed on the same day. Patients leave the office with teeth the same day as the placement of dental implants. For this reason, all on 4 dental implants are also called “new teeth in a day.”
Who Chooses All On 4 Dental Implants?
Patients who choose all four dental implants do so for many reasons. This includes poor-fitting dentures, trauma causing tooth loss, tooth decay or periodontal disease causing progressive tooth loss. The most common patients to choose all on four are not denture wearers.
They are patients who are fighting an uphill and know that they are losing their teeth. These individuals have been trying to hold on as long as possible. They do not want to have any time in their life without teeth, and the thought of a removable denture is not an option…..in comes the all on 4 dental implants system to save their smile.
The All on 4 Dental Implants procedure was developed in the middle of the 1990s. The all on 4 dental implants system has allowed for a variety of patients who, for various reasons, were not considered good candidates for traditional dental implants to now become candidates for dental implants. The All on 4 Dental Implants procedure uses four dental implants per arch (either upper or lower or can be done on both).
The dental implants in the back are placed on an angle. This allows them to take maximum advantage of the existing natural bone structure present. Unique dental implants were developed and refined that could support the immediate placement of replacement teeth. This procedure is attractive to those with loose dentures or those in need of full upper and lower restorations. With the All-on-4 dental implants procedure, qualified patients receive just four dental implants and a full set of new upper or lower replacement teeth in just a few dental visits. This is usually able to be done without the need for dental bone grafts.
All On 4 Dental Implant Attraction
The real attractive part to the all on 4 dental implants procedure is how quickly permanent dental implants can be inserted. This allows patients to leave the same day with a denture that is fixed in place and stabilized by the dental implants. Traditionally, the approach to restoring an entire arch of teeth (either upper or lower) usually involved dental bone grafts, six or more dental implants, and as much as 12-18 months of dental treatment. In that time, the patient would be wearing a temporary denture while the dental bone grafts and dental implant healing and integrated into the bone. This can be very expensive, time-consuming, and uncomfortable for a patient to go back for treatment continuously.
All-on-4 implants are a permanent set of fabricated teeth placed on dental implants surgically inserted into your jaw. They feel, look, and function like natural teeth.
Benefits Of All-on-4 dental implants
- Are permanent teeth that are to be brushed and cleaned like natural teeth
- Do not have to be removed
- Do not need denture adhesives
- Are extremely comfortable
- Allow you to taste your food properly
- Allow you to to enjoy your favorite foods
- Prevent resorption of bone
- Restore your facial features
What Appointments are Necessary for All On 4 Dental Implants?
The All on 4 Dental Implants procedure typically consists of the following visits:
The initial consultation(s) for all on 4 dental implants is necessary for the dentist to develop a proper treatment plan for you. These visits will consist of gathering important medical history, needed X-rays, dental impressions, photos, and a CAT Scan. The dentist will then review all the information with the patient and develop the proper course of treatment for all dental issues.
All On 4 Dental Implants Placement Visit
At the placement visit, the patient will undergo the actual procedure for placement of the special 4 dental implants. Following placement of the dental implants, your dentist will install the temporary denture. The patient will leave on the same day with a beautiful set of fixed, functional teeth.
The patient will need to return for periodic dental examinations over the next several days, weeks, and months to ensure proper fit and comfort. In about six months’ time, the patient will return for a final set of dentures.
The six-month wait is recommended to give the tissues in the mouth time to heal properly, make esthetic corrections, and allow the implants to integrate into the bone properly.
Are There Any Common Problems With All on 4 Dental Implants?
Although some issues with the all on 4 implants are with the devices’ quality, the issues often come from inadequate care and treatment before the procedure. The all on 4 implant procedure can be very complex, and The all on 4 process should intricately involve the restorative dentist from planning to final installation.
Failure to follow steps can result in all on 4 dental implants problems that include device failure, tissue damage, and unnecessary financial expense for the patient.
Improper placement of the all on 4 implants:
Your dentist must place all on 4 dental implants accurately and adequately. If this does not occur, the implants can break or cause loss of bone in the patient.
Implant dentists should be completely familiar with the implant placement procedure and the all on 4 dental implants issues that can arise when the procedures are not followed precisely.
Lack of communication with the dental laboratory during the fabrication of the prosthetic devices:
An all on 4 installation has many steps that your dentist must strictly follow to ensure that the appliance installation procedure is successful.
For example, not enough office visits with the patient, insufficient fitting of the devices, poor communication with the laboratory, vague instructions, and poor appliance quality can all increase the all on 4 dental implants problems patients can experience.
The poor quality construction of the all on 4 implants:
The All-On-4 procedure is a trademarked brand, although some dentists attempt to use many lesser-quality substitutes. Lower quality dental implants can contribute to all on 4 dental implant failures.
Unreasonable expectations from the patient:
A patient who has been missing teeth for an extended period may have difficulty adjusting to a full smile. Your dentist can prevent this situation by communicating the pros and cons of the all on 4 procedure so that the patient knows what to expect. Bite problems may occur due to a lack of nerve endings in the gingival tissues.
Lack of proprioception can also result in chewing issues. Patients should be advised to chew very carefully and eat slowly until they develop chewing muscle memory with their new smile. All-On-4 implant patients might feel that their new device is very bulky. Communicating this beforehand can prevent potential problems that may arise in the future.
Improper dental care after installation:
Patients should be informed of the increased importance of proper dental hygiene routines when caring for their new dentures. Wearing a nightguard is recommended so that patients avoid grinding their teeth at night. Grinding can damage their prosthetic appliance.
Patients should also have all on 4 devices professionally cleaned every four to six months. They also should have the small supporting screws replaced every few years. Proper preventive maintenance will prevent many problems that can occur over time.
Systemic Health conditions such as smoking, diabetes, periodontal disease, or inflammatory diseases:
Diabetes can wreak havoc on your smile. Periodontal disease can slowly destroy your teeth and gums. Smoking can ruin your entire body and dramatically increase the failure rate of your implants. Therefore it is recommended to cease smoking before your procedure.
If your diabetes is well controlled, it should not cause all on 4 implant issues, but you should advise your restorative dentist if you have diabetes. Periodontal disease is a progressive inflammatory disease that will destroy your teeth, gums, and bone.
If you have gum disease, additional dental procedures may be needed before installing the all on 4 dental implants. The implants require sufficient jawbone density to support them, so bone grafts may be necessary to provide enough bone to secure the implants if periodontal disease is present.
Your dentist will advise you there is a lack of sufficient bone for all on 4 procedures. If there is a lack of bone, they will suggest alternatives.
Common All On 4 Dental Implants Questions
How do All-on-4 Dental Implants differ from traditional dentures?
The all-on-4 dental implant procedure is different from traditional dentures because they are a permanent smile solution for severely damaged or missing teeth. The dental implants are inserted directly into your jaw bone, so they feel, look, and function like natural teeth.
How do All-on-4 dental implants compare to traditional dental implants?
The All-on-4 dental implant procedure uses only four implants per arch, whereas traditional full-mouth dental implants use six to eight implants or more on each arch. The implants in the All-on-4 implants procedure are also placed at an angle, which allows for increased strength by using the natural support of your bone.
In addition, the All-on-4 dental implant system typically requires no bone grafting for many patients, which is common in traditional implant surgeries. Therefore, All-on-4 dental implants can save patients both time and money.
How long does the All-on-4 dental implant surgery take?
The surgery can be completed in about 2.5 hours per arch.
What is the success rate for All-on-4 Dental Implants?
Published research studies have shown a 98% success rate for the All-on-4 dental implants procedure.
Who is the ideal candidate for the All-on-4 Dental Implant Procedure?
The ideal patient for the All-on-4 dental implant procedure is missing most of their teeth or currently wearing traditional dentures. Age will not be a limiting factor for All-on-4 dental implants. Good overall health is critical.
Where will my replacement teeth be fabricated?
Your new smile will be fabricated by dental lab technicians using strong, durable, and high-quality materials.
Will my new smile look natural?
YES. The All-on-4 dental implant procedure will give you permanent teeth that feel, look, and function just like natural teeth. No one should know you have implants unless you share that news with them.
Why don’t I get my final set of teeth the day my implants are placed?
As with any surgical procedure, you need healing time. Your restorative dentists will place a temporary set of teeth over your implants. Once the healing is completed, your permanent teeth will be inserted at a follow-up visit approximately six months after surgery.
What if I only require implants on my lower arch? What if I in the future I need All-on-4 dental implants on both arches?
All-on-4 implants can be completed on just the upper or lower arch. An implant dentist will evaluate your smile and offer the best options for you. If your implant dentist feels you might eventually need replacement teeth on both arches, they may suggest combining the procedures at the same time.
This combination will provide better results while saving you time and money. Your implant dentist will work with you to determine the best course for your health needs and finances.
What type of dental cleaning is required after an implant is placed?
Dental implants should be treated like natural teeth. Daily brushing, rinsing, and flossing are necessary to maintain optimal oral health.
Conclusion on All on 4 Dental Implants
More than 100 million people in the United States alone are missing between eleven and fifteen of their permanent adult teeth. By the age of 60, about 70% of these people are completely without teeth and in desperate need of complete oral rehabilitation. Some will also have multiple severely damaged teeth.
Dental implant technology has advanced to bring you the best for your smile. This is where the all on 4 dental implants procedure comes in and is able to restore people’s teeth and change their outlook on life.