Traditional dental implants have been a preferred option for many years. This type of implant uses a single implant—basically an artificial root—to support each individual new tooth. The bone bonds to the titanium in the implant, creating a solid, permanent foundation for your tooth. This bond also helps the bone continue to grow. With traditional dentures or with crown and bridge replacements, the bone will atrophy over time.
Traditional implants require a solid foundation of bone mass in the jaw to support them. Without sufficient bone, the bonding process will be unsuccessful, and the implants will fail. However, in some cases, if you have some areas of your jawbone with more bone, All-on-4 implants can take advantage of these thicker areas of bone. This method uses four implants to anchor a full denture that can be removed for cleaning. The denture remains stationary when you eat or talk, and will not require modification over time. They can be used on either the top or bottom, or on both if necessary.
Are Implants a Good Choice for Me?
The decision on the best form of tooth replacement begins with a consultation with your dentist. You’ll discuss the pros and cons of implants as well as other replacement options. Implants—including All-on-4 implants—might not be your best choice if:
You are a smoker
You have diabetes
You have an autoimmune disorder
You are taking certain medications for osteoporosis
You have gum disease
Gum disease must be treated before implant surgery. Other situations should be evaluated to determine their effect on your ability to heal after an implant procedure. If your implant dentist feels you are not a good candidate, you can work with a prosthodontist to decide on the best option for your individual needs.