Full-Guide To All On Four Dental Implants

Last updated on August 10th, 2023

All-on-4, also called All-on-Four, is a prosthodontics procedure in which all teeth are supported by four dental implants to provide total rehabilitation for totally toothless or nearly toothless patients.

All on four dental implant treatment is becoming a more integral part of prosthetic dentistry. The treatment is very promising since patients can get rid of many dental problems at once. Recovering the functionality and esthetics of a full mouth, all on four dental implants can give you one of the most special assets that you can have in life; your smile.

Year by year, our teeth wear down, and they get discolored, or more seriously, we have tooth decay or gum disease that leads to teeth loss. Thanks to the higher technology and awareness today, we can prevent many of these problems, or we can, at least, extend the functionality and good looking of our teeth. However, some people may not be so careful about their teeth; or they care for their dental health, but some other factors might lead them to have the same dental problems.

All on Four Implants

Fortunately, recovery is still possible. As part of this recovery, each tooth in your mouth might have a unique problem, or each tooth might need a specific treatment. This means lots of treatment time and higher costs. All on four dental implants, however, offer you a quick and affordable solution. 

However, this is not a decision that you can give yourself. You should see your dental professional before taking any action. All-on-4 dental implants are applied as a last resort if other minor treatments will not help to recover your dental health. Therefore, a patient him/herself cannot know it.

This guide listed the most frequently asked questions about all-on-4 dental implants and briefly explained the answers. Reading the following guide, you can make up your mind much easier.

What Are All-On-4 Dental Implants?

As the name suggests, all on four dental implants are good for edentulous patients since the procedure aims to replace all of the upper or lower set of teeth. Unlike the single dental implants or fixed bridge used for a single tooth, only four implants are used to attach the whole upper or lower teeth in all on four dental implants treatment. 

Traditionally, when you have a single tooth loss for some reason, the dentist places one titanium screw into your gum so that he/she can put false teeth on it. However, the case is not that simple for some patients. When there are many teeth to be replaced, implanting them one by one is exhaustive both for the patient and the dentist. Thus, the dentist and the patient discuss all-on-4 dental implants treatment.

The technique used in all on four dental implants uses a permanent denture on which the teeth are put across. The denture is placed on four implants which are screwed in the jawbone at different angles. The different angles keep your denture robustly and give your teeth a seamless look so that your teeth look natural and strong.

All on 4 dental implants image with x-ray

Who Needs All-On-4 Treatment?

All on four dental implants are highly advised to the patients who have lost several of their teeth long before due to the various reasons such as periodontal diseases. They need this treatment since, after years of toothless period, the sinus load goes down onto the bones, and the dentist cannot find a good jawbone to work on, especially at the back of the mouth. However, there is still a good amount of bone in the front mouth, and the dentist puts all four implants in the front but at different angles. Hence, the implants can hold the denture both in the front and back of the mouth.

Fortunately, there are, now, ways to find out whether there is enough amount of bone allowing dentists to perform an implant treatment. One the most ideal ways to evaluate the bone is cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) scan. It allows dental professionals to monitor the jawbone with a very low level of radiation and pain.

Nevertheless, you should always discuss the alternatives with your dentist as each patient and each case is unique.

How Long Do All-On-4 Implants Last?

All-on-4 dental implants are one of the most permanent treatments you can have. According to a study published in the Journal of American Dental Association in 2011, by Paolo Malo and his colleagues, all-on-4 dental implants treatment is viable in the long term with a  success rate of 98.1 percent up to five years, and 94.8 percent up to 10 years. Of course, giving proper care, involving regular brushing, caring about oral hygiene, and avoiding abrasive food and drink, can factor in that. Also, you should see your dentist regularly.

What Is The Recovery Time Of All-On-4 Implants?

All on four dental implants need only oral sedation. Thus the recovery period is pretty short. Your sedation is expected to wear off within 3-5 hours. This might require a friend or a family member to drive you home after the operation. 

Following the treatment, you should eat softer food or prefer liquid intake as much as possible. You should also use the pain medicine that your dentist advised not to have swelling or pain. You can get back to work within three days.

Aftercare Procedure Of All-On-4 Treatment

Naturally, getting completely new teeth set in your mouth feels so different in the early days following all on four dental implants. You might need some time to get used to it. Also, there are some simple aftercare routines that you should follow to make the most of your all on four dental implants.

  • All-on-4 implants’ cleaning is so important. You should brush your teeth twice a day with a soft-bristle toothbrush, floss once a day, and wash with a good mouthwash.
  • Take your medicine as they are prescribed to you by the dentist.
  • Watch your eating and drinking. You should avoid abrasive food and fizzy drinks.
  • Don’t let your mouth and body too dry. You should drink water as much as possible to hydrate your mouth and make the healing process faster.
  • Rest a little more than usual because you have just got treatment, and your body needs some more time to get back to normal.
  • Remember your next appointment with your dentist.

What Are the Pros Of All-On-Four Implants?  

Your teeth get their functionality and beauty just in one session of surgery. It sounds amazing, but you should still consider the issue elaborately. Since all on four dental implants is a treatment which you can have only once in your lifetime under normal conditions, any tiny bit of advantage and disadvantage matters to you. Here are the specific benefits of all on four dental implants:

  • All on four dental implants give you self-confidence with your smile. You can enjoy being in the photos, socializing with people and meeting new people.
  • Since they are built in your mouth permanently, they will not get loose and move on your gums. It will make you feel better when you are eating or speaking.
  • As the four implants are screwed into the front mouth bones, you don’t need extra bone grafting for the back of your mouth in many cases. However, you might still need that in rare conditions.
  • All on four dental implants are applied in one single surgery, which saves a lot of time for you. You don’t have to wait anymore to get a completely new look.
  • The cost of all on four dental implants is much more affordable than the cost of implanting teeth one by one.

What Are The Cons Of All-On-4 Implants?

Although all on four dental implants are one of the state-of-art dental treatments you can get, you should still discuss all on four dental implants with your dentists in detail as there may be some considerations such as:

  • All on four dental implants need a strong bone surface to screw four dental implants, especially in the front jaw. Bone grafting is a good solution for that, but it delays the application of all on four dental implants.
  • You cannot experience the new look and feel of your dental implants until you really get them. However, you can still have an idea through smile design technology.
  • All-On-4 is a trademark brand, but many other brands are serving the same treatment. Therefore, you should search and learn about the best dental implant brands
  • Your dentist can help you with his/her experience with them. Poor quality in all on four dental implants might result in some problems.
pros and cons of all on four dental implants

How Much Do All-On-4 Dental Implants Cost?

All-on-4 implants $20,000 – $50,000 per arch in the USA. The price range is quite wide due to many factors affecting the cost. The prices are similarly high in Europe as well. In Turkey, you can get the procedure at much more affordable prices.

You should learn if you need bone grafting before the surgery. A bone grafting, which means more time and money is needed, may be required if your jaw bone is not big or strong enough to keep four implants in. Also, there may be some other preparatory treatments needed before an on-all-4 dental implant procedure. Therefore, you should consider all of them when it comes to price.

The material and the brand are also important in figuring the total cost of all on four dental implants. Different materials are used in all on 4 dental implants, such as acrylic, porcelain, and zirconia. 

As for the brands, there are also many all on four dental implant brand alternatives on the market. Some clinics and dental professionals prefer some brands over others based on their quality, accessibility, and warranty options. Therefore, you can get more precise information when you meet your dentist or reach the clinic.

FAQs about All-on-4 dental implants

What’s The Difference Between All On 4 Implants And The Regular Dental Implants?

Regular implants usually aim at oral rehabilitation with one or two teeth while all on four aims to replace all the teeth on the lower or upper jawbone.

Is The All-On-4 Treatment Painful?

They give anesthetic to the patient before the procedure. So, it is not painful.

Do You Brush All-On-4 Dental Implants?

Yes, you can brush the dental implants just like your natural teeth. You are advised to use soft-bristles toothbrushes for that.

Does Food Get Stuck Under All On Four?

Since all-on-four implants are cemented in place, food cannot stuck under them.

Are All-On-4 Dental Implants Removable?

No, they are not removable. They are permanently fixed in the mouth.

Do Dental Implants Have To Be Removed To Clean?

No. Dental implants are permanently fixed, so you can’t remove them for cleaning or whatsoever.

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