All-on-4® Dental Implants
Drs. Joe McIntyre and Dan Whiting offer All-on-4® dental implants at our offices in Harrisonburg and Bridgewater, VA. Unlike traditional implants, this option can support a full denture immediately following placement of just four implants. Often, patients who have experienced some bone atrophy can receive All-on-4® implants without the need for a bone graft. During a consultation, we can determine if this option is right for you.
All-on-4® Implants versus Traditional Implants
A traditional dental implant is a titanium post that is placed vertically in the jawbone as a replacement for a missing tooth root. Once the post has properly fused with the jawbone in a process called osseointegration, an abutment (connector) is attached to the top of the implant. A restoration will then permanently attach to the abutment to complete treatment. This process requires two surgeries separated by three to six months of healing time. If the patient has waited to address missing teeth, and has experienced some jaw atrophy, they must first undergo a bone grafting procedure, which can extend the treatment timeline by three to six months.
All-on-4® implants are an expedited alternative to this approach. It involves placing two vertical implants in the front of the jaw, and two angled implants in the back of the jaw. This arrangement maximizes contact with the bone tissue, often eliminating the need for a bone graft. In most cases, the implants are immediately ready to support a denture, meaning you can enter our office with missing teeth and a compromised jaw, and leave with fully restored function.
What to Expect during Your Consultation
During your initial consultation, your dentist will perform a 3D CT (computerized topography) scan to assess your candidacy. In addition to having adequate jawbone tissue, you must be free of tooth decay and gum disease.
Treatment involves placing two vertical implants in the front of the jaw, and two angled implants in the back of the jaw. This arrangement maximizes contact with the bone tissue, often eliminating the need for a bone graft.
Once you and your doctor have agreed upon a treatment plan, we can schedule your procedure. Before beginning, your doctor will administer local anesthetic and, if necessary, administer sedation to make you more comfortable. Incisions are placed in the gum tissue, and the implants are inserted into the jaw.
After surgery, a temporary set of dentures will be placed over your implants before you leave our office. In the meantime, our partner lab will design your permanent dentures based on the impressions and scans from your initial examination. In about three to six months, once you have completely healed, your permanent restoration will be placed.
Benefits of All-on-4® Dental Implants
In addition to natural-looking, long-lasting results, All-on-4® dental implants offer:
- Restored dental function
- Improved facial structure and overall appearance
- Restored ability to enjoy your favorite foods again
- Prevention of dental misalignment, jawbone deterioration, and other oral health issues
- Restored self-confidence and a boost in overall quality of life