by Kumar T. Vadivel, DDS,FDS RCS,MS
What are Dental Implants?
Securing bridges, anchoring dentures and overdentures, and most frequently, replacing lost teeth is done using dental implants. These implants are unique because instead of placing a prosthetic tooth over the healed gum, the implant is installed into the jawbone. This stimulates the tissues and helps to prevent bone loss and facial sagging. The implants are made from titanium, an exceptionally biocompatible metal. The implant post is inserted into the patient’s jawbone at the location of the missing tooth and a crown is secured to the top. The crown will most likely be made from porcelain or ceramic and can be color-matched to the surrounding teeth.
How Are Dental Implants Installed?
If dental implants are chosen as treatment, it will take three visit to completely install them. A procedure to implant the post into the jaw will be performed during the first visit and allowed time to heal. The post will fuse with the bone, making the implant very sturdy and stable. This fusion provides the stimulation which keeps the bone strong and the facial tissues intact. During the second visit, an implant abutment is connected to the top of the installed post. The abutment will hold the crown, denture, or bridge to the post. The crown or other prosthetic device used to top the post is made by collecting an impression of the area. This is also done during the second visit. At the final visit the finished crown will be attached to the post and buffed into shape.
It is crucial to remember to care for the gum tissue around the implant to ensure that the device is a permanent replacement.
What are All-on-4 Dental Implants?
All-on-4 dental implants are a permanent set of prosthetic teeth which look and feel extremely natural. All-on-4 dental implants:
Are permanent teeth which can be brushed and flossed like normal teeth
Do not have to be removed like dentures
Do not require adhesives like dentures
Are comfortable since they are not pressing down on the gums
Allows you to experience the hot and cold as well as the taste in the same manner
Allows you to bite with good force, ridding you of food restrictions
Prevents bone weakening
Keeps soft tissues of the face in place
How do All-on-4 Dental Implants Compare to Traditional Implants?
The All-on-4 dental implant technique employs four implants per arch as opposed to traditional implants which use anywhere from six to eight implants, sometimes more, in each arch. The implants in the All-on-4 devices are also placed at an angle, which increases contact by utilizing the natural support of the bone. Additionally, the All-on-4 procedure does not require bone grafting for most patients. In the end, All-on-4 dental implants can save patients time, money in the long run, and especially di