"I greatly dislike going to ANY dentist for any reason, including just having my teeth cleaned. This is the first dental office that I have returned to on a regular basis to maintain the health of my teeth and gums. It only took be 60+ years to find such a place."
Traditional, removable dentures used to be the standard for replacing teeth when most or all of the teeth were missing. If you have worn dentures, or are still wearing them now, you are probably all too familiar with issues like sore gums, messy adhesives, or worse, adhesives that fail at the most inopportune moments. There can also be problems with eating and talking, both in terms of personal comfort, and general function of the dentures.
If you have heard about dental implants and are wondering what your options are for upgrading from dentures to implants, contact us at our Fairfax, VA dental practice and make an appointment to have your situation assessed. We use the most advanced Cone Beam CT scanning technology to quickly have a look at your mouth and jaw from every angle, and we can usually discuss your options with you on the same day.
One of the issues with adhesive-based dentures is that because they sit on the gums, there is no root to interact with the jaw bone underneath. Over time, this can cause the bone to deteriorate, which can lead to changes in the shape of your face and smile. With dental implants, a few titanium “roots” are placed into the bone. As the body heals from the procedure, the bone becomes fused to the implants, and afterward a bridge or denture can be fitted to the exposed bart of the implants. With an all-on-4 procedure, as few as four implants may be needed to support an entire arch of teeth.
If you’ve been curious about dental implants as an upgraded alternative to your current dentures, the sooner you come in for an assessment, the better. We can get you in for a scan and then speak to you about your options, and afterward you can decided how you want to proceed. The first and most important step is not to wait, as you want your jawbone in the best possible condition for placing the implants. Regardless of how long you’ve had your dentures, it is certainly worth coming in and getting a professional opinion about how to make your teeth more reliable and comfortable
All on Four as an Alternative to Dentures. If you need several or even all of your teethreplaced with implants, you are probably worried about the discomfort involved, the cost, and how the end result will look and feel. However, it is important to note that you will not necessarily need separate implants for each tooth. All-on-4 implants combine multiple teeth onto one implant, with often an entire arch of teeth being supported on just four implants.
This may sound like two few implants to support so many teeth, but the All-on-4 procedure works slightly differently from standard single tooth implants, in that the angle of the implants is tilted to give the highest amount of stability. The two frontmost implants are placed vertically, whereas the two in the back of the mouth are tilted forward at 45 degrees. This allows the two back implants to root into the bone tissue nearer the front of the jaw, and the bone fusion occurs much more quickly.
The procedure itself takes much less time overall than separate implants, and in most cases bone grafting is not necessary. After the implants are placed in the mouth, there will probably be some discomfort and/or swelling in the mouth for a few days, but this will gradually improve. Also, the teeth you get on the day of your implants are permanent – no more temporary restorations that have to be replaced at a later date.
You will, of course, need to have a consultation to assess whether All-on-4 implants are right for you. While All-on-4 does work for many patients who need multiple teeth replaced, for some people it may not be recommended. If you are a smoker or have diabetes, for example, the dentist may have to discuss other options with you for replacing your teeth. All-on-4 implants are known for their stability, and after your healing process is complete, you should not be able to tell the difference between your implants and natural teeth. You will be able to eat, speak, and best of all, smile normally, and there will not be any of the looseness or discomfort common with removable dentures.
For many patients, All-on-4 implants are the permanent answer to their dental woes. To find out if you are a suitable candidate, schedule an appointment today to meet with our team for a comprehensive examination and assessment.