What Are All-On-4 Dental Implants?
All-On-4 dental implants are the strategic placement of four dental implants that when placed in just the right place, with two in the front of the jaw and two angled at a 45-degree angle, we can use to support an entire arch of teeth.
Another term for this would be full arch dental implants, except that it used to take many more implants to support an entire arch or both arches of teeth. By angling the two implants at the back of the jaw, we can support more teeth with fewer implants, effectively preventing bone loss and providing you with a more stable alternative to traditional dentures.
All-On-4 Implants Placement & Restoration Process
The process begins with a consultation with Charlotte dentist Dr. Picot. This will include an oral exam and digital x-rays that will reveal not only the extent of tooth loss but also the extent of underlying bone loss.
To support a dental implant, you need to have adequate bone density and structure. If we determine that you are lacking in sufficient bone support, we will recommend that you have a bone grafting procedure done.
Next, we will prepare for the surgery by taking measurements of how your jaw fits together, the height of your gums, and we will take impressions of your bite and send this information to a dental lab that will fabricate your official denture.
If you have any remaining teeth, these will need to be extracted. We will administer a local anesthetic and some additional sedation if desired before making an incision into the gums and implanting a titanium post in the jawbone. This is repeated up to four times per jaw.
A type of abutment is attached to each implant. The component that attaches to the implant and the restoration in a single tooth implant is known as an abutment, while they’re known as O-rings for full arch implants. These are the points of attachment for your immediate temporary dentures.
You will go through 3 to 6 months of osseointegration just like with single implants. This is when the jawbone grows around the implants and they fuse, forming artificial tooth roots. After this is complete, your temporary dentures can be replaced with your official dentures. You may need to go through a few stages of adjustments before they are just right.
Benefits of All-On-4 Implants
With the implants anchoring your denture, you can eat and speak freely without the worry of your teeth moving. Since the implants are embedded in the jawbone and your denture is clipped onto the implants, your teeth will never shift while you’re speaking or chewing.
When you do eat, you’re providing stimulation to the jawbone which prevents bone loss. By preventing bone loss, you prevent the associated consequences like premature facial sagging. After placing the implants, you can receive immediate teeth.
Dental implants have a very long lifespan, lasting for 25 years or longer. While you will need to replace the denture that attaches to them, the actual components that anchor them in place and preserve your jawbone can last for the rest of your life. They’re also very low maintenance so you care for them just like you would with your natural teeth.
Am I a Good Candidate for All-On-4 Implants?
Good candidates for All-On-4 implants are those who are in good overall and oral health but who are missing most of their teeth in at least one arch. You should not be a smoker, as this increases your risk of implant failure and interferes with healing from oral surgery.
It’s also important to have sufficient jawbone density to support the implants. However, you can undergo a bone grafting procedure and still become eligible. Most of all, implants are a great alternative to traditional dentures or bridges.