How Are All-on-4 Implants Placed?

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All-on-4 implants are a remarkable technology that allow for longer lasting and more convenient denture and crown fixtures. This particular type of implant draws its name from the fact that it only requires 4 implants as opposed to the 6 to 10 implants required by many other types of dental implant. Moreover all-on-4s also allow for the same day fixture of dentures and crowns after the implants have fused to the jawbone and the surrounding tissues have healed.

This remarkable implant technology has become extremely popular, and in this article we look at the procedure involved in attaching the implant.

The procedure

Dental implants like the all-on-4 act as artificial roots, structures that lie beneath the teeth we see and are responsible for anchoring each individual tooth to the jaw beneath it. Roots have a number of important functions, but the role they play which implants mimic is in stabilising the tooth. Dental implants are fixtures inserted into the jaw and gum to which prosthetic teeth and their bridges are attached. Because of that, the first step in the process of installing all-on-4 implants is to gain access to the jaw bone.

Your dentist will make an incision into the gum above where each implant will go. Two of the four implants involved in all-on-4 will be placed at the front of the jaw, where the bone is thickest and strongest, while the final two will be angled to the back of the jaw and are used for further stability. After the initial incision is made, a specialist drill is used to make a socket in the jaw bone into which each implant is inserted.

Unlike other forms of implant technology, which require a lengthy healing period, dentures can be fitted to the all-on-4 implants as soon as they have been placed into the jawbone. These are a provisional set of dentures, which are made out of a much lighter material, usually an acrylic resin, to place minimal pressure on the healing bone and gums in the freshly treated area. After about six months during which the implant fuses to the jawbone to form an extremely stable structure, these resin dentures are replaced with a stronger porcelain set, usually reinforced with a titanium framework. These permanent dentures can, with proper care, last many, many years, and your dentist will give you instructions regarding their maintenance and support.

It is important to follow all of your dentist’s instructions during the recovery period, as proper oral hygiene is key to the healing process. Your dentist will also provide you with instructions as to what you should be eating while your mouth is recovering, but once your permanent dentures have been installed and have fully healed, you will have access to a much broader range of foods than offered by any other implant technology.

As mentioned above, the all-on-4 can accommodate a full arch of teeth, and unlike other implants which require a temporary fitting for a few weeks, permanent dentures will be put on straight away. This saves time, money, and the general discomfort of multiple dental procedures.

After the procedure has been completed, it is likely that your dentist will arrange follow up appointments just to check that everything is going well. If you experience any discomfort following the procedure you should talk to your dentist about it, if only to put your mind at ease.

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