Understanding the All-on-4 implant technique
All-on-4 is a more durable approach to replacing a row of teeth
If you’ve experienced the loss of multiple teeth, had extensive dental work, or aren’t comfortable with your smile, All-on-4 implants may be suitable to replace your teeth.
Before you decide which dental procedure to have, it pays to be informed about the options. With all the information on hand, you can make an informed decision for a lasting, healthy smile.
At The Point Dental, our dentists use Nobel Biocare All-on-4 implants. Nobel Biocare is continually advancing All-on-4 implants for durability and comfort. Our first consultation is complimentary.
All-on-4 implants technique
The Nobel Biocare technique for replacing an arch of teeth uses only four dental implants. This revolutionary technique involves placing two parallel front implants and two back implants that are tilted 45 degrees.
Tilting the back implants provides tremendous support for the entire jaw. It helps to overcome any bone deficiencies at the back of the jaw.
The design of Nobel Biocare All-on-4 implants means that the implants expand the bone rather than cutting through the bone. This technique avoids the need for bone grafting and allows the patient to enjoy a set of new teeth within days.
The goals of All-on-4 implants are to:
- Restore a healthy appearance and smile
- Provide minimal disruption to daily life during the process
- Allow you to eat normally once fully healed
Assessment before All-on-4
The first step towards All-on-4 implants is an initial consultation. The dental team answers any questions about the procedure and helps the patient to determine whether this is the best treatment option for their circumstances.
Next, a CT scan reveals the bone structure and shape around the jaw. This information allows the dentist to plan the surgical procedure. Careful measurements taken of the mouth will ensure implants and prostheses fit precisely.
Fitting the implants
All-on-4 is revolutionary as it allows a patient to benefit from a fixed, full-arch prosthesis securely held in position by just four implants. The rear implants are inserted at a 45-degree angle, providing stability.
There are All-on-4 options that are suitable even if there is no bone present at the back of the mouth to support the implants. At the front of the mouth, your dentist will shape bone to ensure a beautiful, aesthetic result.
The key benefit of All-on-4 is that it avoids the time-consuming, painful and costly procedures of bone grafting.
Fitting the prosthesis
The All-on-4 prosthesis includes a set of 12 teeth. After inserting the implants, the dentist will assess the new teeth in the mouth. Your dentist will fine-tune the prostheses to ensure a perfect fit while the patient recovers, usually within 1 to 3 days.
During the initial procedure, the surgeon may reduce the bone to ensure a comfortable, flush fit with the bridge that supports the new teeth. Once the swelling from the implant subsides, it’s time to insert your new teeth.
All-on-4 final prosthesis
The final All-on-4 prosthesis will look like a natural, healthy set of teeth. The new teeth are ceramic or acrylic, matching the size of natural teeth.
The bridge which supports the new teeth is a single piece for strength and stability. The bridge includes a layer of softness that mimics your natural gums, ensuring comfort within your mouth.
Features of the All-on-4 final prosthesis include:
- New teeth supported by a one-piece bridge
- The bridge is medical grade full acrylic, metal acrylic or metal-ceramic
- The prosthesis is flexible to facilitate speech and eating
- False soft tissue provides comfort within the mouth
The prosthesis from Nobel Biocare can include horizontal support using cantilevers where needed. This horizontal support creates additional stability.
All-on-4 is suitable even where the jaw bone has deteriorated, so unlike conventional implants, new teeth are a natural length.
All-on-4 upper denture
If you have lost multiple teeth in your upper mouth, All-on-4 is a treatment option that can replace these teeth, allowing you to smile again. There are many reasons you could have lost these teeth, whether through multiple dental procedures or an accident.
The upper denture will be fixed to the maxilla, the bone at the top of your mouth. Even where this bone has softened or deteriorated, it is possible to mount an All-on-4 upper denture using the tilted implant technique.
The outcome will be natural-looking teeth within just a few days. The aesthetically designed upper denture will permit you to smile with confidence.
For the upper denture, there is a follow-up appointment after 5 years to ensure the denture is stable.
Why implants and not removable dentures?
While it may seem easier and faster to have removable dentures fitted, those seeking a successful long-term outcome should consider All-on-4 implants.
According to a 2009 retrospective study published by the University of Washington in the International Journal of Oral Maxillofacial Implants, dental implants, which drill into the jaw, have a higher success rate than removable prostheses, which sit on top of the gums.
All-on-4 compared to conventional full arch implants
A 2014 longitudinal study from the Case School of Dental Medicine, published in Implant Dentistry, followed patients after implant procedures. Half had conventional full-arch implants, and the remainder had the All-on-4 treatment concept. Researchers found that the All-on-4 treatment was considered less costly and less time consuming, with improved patient comfort throughout the procedures.
You can learn more about the difference between All-on-4 and conventional dentures. No matter which procedure you are considering, it pays to weigh up the risks and benefits. Our staff can assess the condition of your teeth and jaw to give you suitable options for treatment.
The All-on-4 implant technique overcomes the limitations of softened or damaged bone. Our team are trained by the Malo Clinic and deliver the most advanced procedures to ensure your comfort.