Different All-on-4 Procedures

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All-on-4 implants have quickly become an invaluable part of many dentists’ arsenals, allowing for a quick and effective method of providing people with implants to which prosthetic teeth (dentures) can be fixed. All-on-4 implants require fewer implants, 4 to be precise, compared to other, more traditional denture technologies, and yet they also allow for easier usage and are, in many ways, very close to natural teeth in terms of what foods you can eat and how you treat them. This is a huge advantage as the ultimate aim of prosthetic teeth and their delivery is to get artificial teeth as close to their natural counterparts as possible.

All-on-4 implants are a trademark of Nobel Biocare, however there is some considerable variation in the procedure itself and how it is performed. These have arisen in the years since the development of all-on-4 implants, and in this article we look at how all-on-4 procedures can vary depending on the dentists involved etc.

Differences in the all-on-4 procedure

Because the implant technology itself is a trademark of a particular company, it remains constant regardless of who is applying the treatment. All dental implants of this type will retain the same basic principle and components, namely 4 implants which are positioned in a particular way. 2 of these implants are placed to the front of the jaw, where they are in a vertical position to take advantage of the greater bone density to the fore of the bone in question. The last 2 implants are angled towards the back of the jaw, providing a firm and secure fixing for dentures to be attached to.

The differences can be in what kind of dentist is involved, and whether the dentures are attached straight away.

While many clinics offer these implants through the services of a general dentist, some will offer the procedure through an Oral Surgeon. This is an individual with specific surgical training and experience that be invaluable when applying dental implants. An Oral Surgeon will have the skills and experience necessary to deal with more complex cases and achieve good results.

One of the main draws of the all-on-4 procedure is the fact that once the implant has fused to the jawbone and the surrounding gum has healed, dentures can be affixed to the implants straight away. Other dentures require that a 6 week temporary crown or denture be fitted before the permanent one, which can be inconvenient for patients who will have to go through an extra set of procedures and treatments before receiving their care.

In some cases however temporary or provisional prostheses are fitted onto all-on-4 dentures for a certain amount of time before the final, permanent dentures are attached. This has some advantages which is why the technique is used by some dentists and oral surgeons, and the provisional dentures will usually remain on a prosthetic for as long as 6 months as the gum and bone heal.

Provisional dentures are usually made out of a lighter material like acrylic resin. This is not as durable as the materials used in permanent dentures, however it does offer the advantage of being lighter, therefore applying less pressure on implants. This also has the advantage of providing a patient with a set of dentures on the day of their procedure, thereby restoring confidence and functionality.

During this time you will need to be careful about what foods you eat and how you use your dentures, you dentist will give you detailed instructions with regards to how to maintain the health of both your dentures and your mouth as a whole.

Once everything has healed, a permanent set of dentures usually made out of porcelain or some other equally long lasting material fitted with a titanium supporting frame will be provided. The final set of dentures will be carefully engineered to suit your mouth, and can be used almost exactly like a natural set of teeth.

There may be other variations from practice to practice, but all-on-4 implants should be applied in principally the same manner.

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