Key Factors to Consider Before Getting All-on-4 Dental Implants
All-on-4 dental implants (also known as full-arch fixed implant bridges) have taken the dental world by storm. These bridges are typically supported by four to six dental implants. The implants are made out of titanium and restored with a framework of titanium overalled with esthetic zirconia.
Thanks to extensive information on the internet, many people have become aware of the peerless benefits of dental implants, including All-on-4 dental implants. Many years ago, most patients were not even aware that All-on-4 dental implants exist. Nowadays, it has become common for patients to request this treatment.
If you are considering getting All-on-4 dental implants, below are some of the important factors you should consider:
Speech issues are a massive concern for many patients. What can seem like a trivial speech flaw can become a significant concern for a patient with an All-on-4. Implant-supported bridges will need horizontal and vertical bulk for strength. With different restorative materials, vertical needs can vary.
It is crucial for patients that are considering All-on-4 to be aware of this. While they can always retrain their tongues, this can be a source of anxiety for others. If speech is a concern, alternative treatments might be considered. For instance, individual dental implants or short-span bridges may be recommended. A practitioner experienced and skilled in restoring All-on-fours knows how to work with the individual patient to insure the best fit including perfecting speech.
Irregular chewing cycles, clenching, bruxism (also known as grinding) are some of the parafunctional habits that can impact the patient’s treatment decision. When parafunction is present, a bar-supported overdenture may be recommended. Bar overdentures are considered ideal for patients with severe bruxism.
At night, the overdenture can be removed and replaced with a flat-paned night guard. The flat-planed night guard will snap onto the bar for retention. The night guard also functions as protection for the final prosthesis. This minimizes the strain on the bone and the supporting implants.
Difficulty Adapting to Bridge Bulk
Apart from the possibility of an All-on-4 bridge affecting speech, there is another downside. For instance, some patients might find it difficult to psychologically adapt to the feel of an All-on-4 bridge. This can be a concern for some patients since most realize the problem after the surgery and after the ridge has been reduced.
Ideally, we carry out detailed conversations about this with patients so they are well aware of what they are getting into and there are no unwanted surprises along the way. If bulk is an issue, other options that only replace the tooth volume should be considered.
Because of the reduced bulk of the restorations, more implants will likely be required to support the bridge and minimize the risk of fracture and spans of missing teeth. Many patients opt for the conventional All-on-4 after consultation due to minimal treatment time and lower cost.
While certain factors have to be considered before getting All-on-4 dental implants, it is regarded as one of the best options available for someone who has failing or ailing teeth because of the many benefits it offers. If you are considering getting All-on-4 dental implants, schedule an appointment with us. Our highly-skilled, compassionate, and kind team can help you decide if it is the best option for you.