Dental implants are a permanent solution for missing teeth. They are stable, durable and may last a lifetime. They regenerate bone mass and hold teeth as tightly as natural teeth. All-on-four is a treatment technique that uses four dental implants to support a full fixed bridge on either the upper or lower jaw.
Tooth loss is often accompanied by loss of jaw bone because the jaw needs exercise just as other bones do. The jaw bone gets exercise when you chew, but if a tooth is missing, that portion of the jaw bone begins to deteriorate. Dental implants fix that problem and may even protect the volume of your face because the skin around missing teeth begins to sink and sag.
Dental implants involve implanting a titanium screw or plate into your jawbone. The bone gradually grows around the artificial root and secures it just as it does a natural root. A crown or artificial tooth that is made to match your natural teeth is fixed to the top of the root.
All-on-four uses the principals of dental implants to give this kind of stability to dentures and bridges. Four implants are fixed into the upper or lower jaw. The two in the front of the mouth are implanted straight into the bone and the two at the back of the mouth are typically implanted at a 45-degree angle. This is because the back of the jaw often has bony deficiencies or anatomical structures that will not receive a straight implant. These four implants will secure a full arch of artificial teeth and hold them firmly. This prevents future bone loss, which helps you maintain a more youthful appearance.
Dentures are one way to treat complete tooth loss, but they are not for everyone. Movement during speaking or eating, sounds such as clicking, sores on the gums and removal at night for cleaning are all some common inconveniences that come with dentures. Finally, they need to be removed and left in a glass of water by the bed. Dentures also require messy adhesives for keeping them in place as much as possible.
All-on-four technology was developed because it was seen that you do not need a dental implant to hold each tooth. Four implants in the top arch and four in the bottom arch are enough to hold a full set of teeth securely.
All-on-four treatment provides a fixed, full-arch prosthesis on the day of surgery for patients who meet the criteria for immediate loading of the implants on the artificial root. When the implants in the back of the mouth are tilted, bone grafting is not necessary because they utilize available bone.
When you meet our all-on-four expert, you can learn more about dental implants and how they are the standard treatment for missing teeth. Your teeth may be examined to evaluate if you are a good candidate for all-on-four implants. They function and look like natural teeth and you will not have the problems of speaking and eating that exist with most dentures.
Our specialist provides all-on-four implants with care and expertise at the office of Samuel F. Jirik, DDS. If you are in the Little Rock, AR area and looking to learn more about this popular treatment option, contact our office in Cabot to schedule your consultation and learn more.