All-on-4 Implant Supported Bridge Dentist Littleton
Today's implant systems enable a minimum number of implants to support a maximum number of teeth. This means as few as four implants can be used to support a full arch (upper or lower jaw) of fixed, non-removable replacement teeth. This process is not only the most efficient way to replace all the teeth, but also the most cost-effective strategy for implant-supported tooth replacement. Individual implants to replace each tooth are impractical and not recommended. Given that there are usually 28 functional teeth (excluding wisdom teeth), replacing teeth individually can be vastly more expensive and may not offer any better results.
The Process in a Nutshell....
Starting Place — The dentist takes records of your existing condition, whether you still have teeth or are wearing a denture, to determine various factors. These include how long the teeth should be, where the bite should be and how much lip and facial structure support is needed.
Diagnostics — CT scans, short for computed tomography produce 3-D pictures of the jawbone, including the position of the teeth to be replaced. These scans provide critical information about a person's anatomical structures (including bone, sinuses and nerves) and the ideal location for the implants.
Planning — Using computer simulation, the implants are digitally positioned in the jawbones in appropriate locations to optimally support the replacement teeth. This also allows for the fabrication of a surgical guide if needed.
Precision Surgery — Surgery can be done simultaneously including tooth extractions, bone shaping, and implant placement. Skill, experience and meticulous planning are needed, particularly if the person has had significant bone loss.
Temporary Teeth — Temporary acrylic replacement teeth are attached directly to the implants via abutments — connectors that allow solid attachment to the implants. These teeth are considered temporary and are needed to facilitate initial healing; they will later be removed and replaced with permanent ones.
Healing — The temporary teeth stay in the mouth approximately 3 months until healing is completed. During the first 6-8 weeks of healing, it's a good idea to “go easy” on the new teeth, avoiding chewy or tough foods. Because implant surgery is very precise and well-planned, people generally have little post-operative discomfort and begin functioning with their new temporary teeth almost immediately.
Permanent Teeth — When the process of osseo-integration is completed, the dentist removes the temporary teeth replacing them with the permanent ones. They are generally made of stronger, more durable materials and fit the healed gum tissues more precisely. The new permanent teeth will function just like natural teeth and look beautiful, too!
Dr. Herzberg is a member of the American Society of Implant & Reconstructive Dentistry (ASIRD). ASIRD is committed to improving the quality of care for dental implant patients by elevating the standards of surgical and restorative dental education and practice. Not every dentist routinely restores and maintains dental implants. By using an ASIRD team, rest assured that your dentist routinely restores and maintains dental implants. Learn more about ASIRD.