Edentulism (complete tooth loss) in one or both arches is common, and people missing a full mouth of teeth need to replace them quickly so they can talk clearly and, most importantly, eat properly. There are several solutions available and which include:
Full dentures are a traditional solution for complete tooth loss, and today’s modern dentures are designed to look and feel as natural as possible. They consist of a gum-colored acrylic base supporting replacement teeth. The dentures rest directly on the gums, relying solely on the gum and the jawbone underneath for support and retention.
Fabricating a full denture is non-invasive and doesn’t require surgery. However, dentures can cause significant problems after just a few years of use due to changes in the jawbone’s shape as the bone gradually resorbs. The change in shape reduces retention, so the denture becomes increasingly loose and ill-fitting, making it more and more difficult to eat and talk comfortably and confidently. When you lose the ability to chew food properly, it can significantly limit food choices, potentially impacting nutrition and overall health. Unless you have a nutritious diet, it is harder to fight disease and find the energy to enjoy life fully.
While full dentures remain an option, other dental implant solutions can provide better long-term results.
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Full mouth dental implants can restore a complete arch of teeth using at least six dental implants for support. These implants are inserted at regular intervals throughout the jawbone, ensuring excellent support for a full arch bridge. The bridge is permanently cemented or, more likely, screwed onto the dental implants, so it is nonremovable and remains permanently in place. The result is a highly predictable long-lasting treatment outcome providing teeth that feel stable and strong and which look good and function extremely well.
Treatment to restore a complete arch of teeth is not quick, and it may take several months to complete this process, but it is well worth the wait.
We need to assess your jawbone to make sure it has sufficient bone to support the implants, and if not, you may need an additional procedure called a bone graft. It’s not unusual to need a bone graft, especially if you lost teeth quite some time ago, because the jawbone naturally resorbs once teeth are removed. The bone towards the back of the jaw is naturally thinner and more likely to require bone grafting. Bone grafting is a very straightforward treatment that builds up bone in areas where it is deficient, but it can add to the costs and time needed for full-mouth dental implants.
Once the implants are in place, it may be possible to fit a temporary restoration immediately, but otherwise, the implants are covered and left to heal for several months. During this time, you receive temporary teeth to use.
All on Four is an innovative solution for complete tooth loss, restoring an entire arch of teeth using just four dental implants. It is a skilled technique where four dental implants are placed towards the front of the jawbone, utilizing the bone where it is stronger and thicker and reducing or eliminating the need for bone grafting. Two dental implants are placed vertically, while the remaining two are placed on either side but are angled backward. Angling these implants increases the contact between the implant and the bone, increasing strength and stability, so they can easily support a complete arch of teeth.
One advantage of choosing All on Four is the affordability of treatment. Using fewer dental implants to support a complete arch is more cost-effective than full-mouth dental implants, and there is normally no need for bone grafting. Once the implants are in place, it’s often possible to fit a temporary prosthesis on the same day of surgery. The prosthesis splints the implants together, preventing micro-movements while they heal and fuse with the bone around them. The temporary prosthesis is replaced with your permanent teeth several months later.
Denture implants are another affordable solution where dental implants hold a full denture firmly in place. The denture still looks and feels like a traditional denture but has special attachments on its fitting surface. The denture clips directly onto the implants or a bar fitted over the implants. This solution is also called an overdenture or implant-supported denture.
The implant denture is removable, so it can easily be taken out for cleaning, but once in the mouth is held securely in position so it cannot move. Although it is still less than a fixed implant bridge, biting strength is far greater than an ordinary denture. It is a good solution for anyone looking for affordable dental implants, and many patients find it an excellent option. Because the denture is removable, it is easy to care for properly.