It is very important to understand that this is a treatment that is provided for patients who are either missing all their teeth or are losing all their teeth. The term (All on 4) itself defines teeth that are permanent, meaning retained, and supported by four implants. In comparison to dentures that are removable and supported by the patient’s bone and tissue.
In the past, the solution to complete tooth loss was to offer patients dentures. Some patients do fine with this however, the majority are miserable. The misery may stem from ill-fitting dentures, continued atrophy of the jaws, loss of chewing power, loss of self-esteem, diminished self-confidence, and altered taste.
Dentures are not a physiologic treatment option. With tooth loss, bone loss ensues. When the teeth are present, the internal forces from the roots in the bone cause the bone to remodel and maintain a healthy bone level. When the roots are removed this internal pressure is no longer present (disuse atrophy). Furthermore, the external pressure of the denture over time results in accelerated bone atrophy. This results in altered facial profiles (accelerated aging) and ill-fitting dentures.
Implants address this by replacing the internal pressure in the bone and support a permanent prosthesis. This results in bone retention because the prosthesis is applying forces on to the implants and this results in healthy bone remodeling.
With dentures the patient loses a substantial amount of their chewing power. Studies have shown that a patient will lose up to 90% of functionality wearing a denture. This is very significant. Also, the patient will have a difficult time with certain foods, and, are unable to chew adequately which results in digestive problems. When you have implant supported teeth the patient will regain their full functionality and are able to chew and eat as if they had their natural teeth again.
When you have to remove your teeth at night or, you feel uncomfortable that something is moving in your mouth, or you are regularly getting food caught under a denture, or you are always concerned that the denture may dislodge, this can put a patient in a very uncomfortable position and results in the loss of self-esteem and diminished self-confidence.
The implant retained prosthesis will resolve all these issues giving the patient the self-confidence and self-esteem that results from having the feeling that they have their natural teeth again. This is a huge psychological advantage.
Click here: https://vimeo.com/255281715#share to listen to actual patients and their thoughts on their All on 4 experiences. Patients that choose All on 4 treatment are able to skip wearing the removable denture and a temporary prosthesis is placed on the implants the same day.
The denture, especially the upper denture, covers a large area in the mouth such as the palate. Some of the taste of our food isfrom the taste buds in our palate so covering it up results in an altered taste. One of the better joys in life is eating and being able to taste the food that we eat.
In conclusion, I hope I have provided information so that the term can be understood and we can draw a comparison to the conventional treatment with dentures. For more information, we invite you to visit our All-on-Four.