Extensive tooth loss can be devastating. However, if you have suffered jawbone atrophy, you may not be a candidate for traditional dental implants.
At Smiles for Life in Harrisonburg, VA, we also provide All-on-4® dental implants, which can often be provided without bone grafting and can support a denture immediately following placement.
Should you consider All-on-4 implants instead?
Here's how the All-on-4 implant procedure works...
Are Harrisonburg patients who choose All-on-4 satisfied with their replacement teeth?
Recipients Would Recommend All-on-4 to Others
Charlotte has upper and lower permanent fixed bridges (also called All-on-4 or Same Day Smile). She was able to save significantly on her treatment by billing through Medicare and experienced awesome results.
"I am so pleased with the dental work I have had done at Smiles for Life. It is great to be able to smile again without being embarrassed about broken, ugly teeth. Following years with paraesophageal acid reflux which led to tooth decay and very limited chewing capability, I read about Smiles for Life through testimonies in the Daily News Record. Honestly, I doubted many of the things I had read, but out of desperation, I made an appointment for myself. From the first visit, I was sold! Everyone was so nice, professional and informative. I have continued to be pleased through the year now that I have been going there. Through the weeks that followed my first appointment, I did choose dental implants. I found that all I had read and heard was 100% true. The process went really well without any real pain, only some mild discomfort while healing from extractions. It was still hard for me to believe, since dental care had always been uncomfortable for me. Now everywhere I go, people tell me what a nice smile I have. Those who knew me before tell me how nice and natural my teeth look, almost to the point of embarrassment. I am so pleased with the results, and my family is also very pleased. Many of them have chosen Smiles for Life as well for their dental care. Even my great grandchildren like going to the dentist there. Thank you Smiles for Life for giving me back the ability to enjoy a good meal again and to have a confident smile. I would highly recommend Smiles for Life for any dental care."
How do you know if this technique is right for you?
All-on-4 Is Also Ideally Suited for Patients with Bone Loss
The roots of natural teeth play a crucial role in maintaining the tissue in your jawbone. When teeth are lost, the jawbone begins to shrink, or atrophy. Left untreated, bone loss can change the shape of your face and lead to other oral health issues. Dental implants are titanium posts which take the place of tooth roots to fully rebuild your smile.
With All-on-4, your doctor at our Harrisonburg practice will place the posts at strategic angles to take advantage of the remaining tissue. The titanium implants will then stimulate the jawbone to prevent further tissue loss.
Jim has upper and lower permanent fixed bridges (also called All-on-4 or Same Day Smile). He was able to save significantly on his treatment by billing through Medicare and experienced awesome results with his health and confidence.
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 Harrisonburg office with missing teeth and a compromised jaw, and leave with fully restored function.
What to Expect during Your Consultation
During your initial consultation at our Harrisonburg practice, your dentist will perform a 3D CT (computerized tomography) 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 implant-supported 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.
Smiles for Life
The team of highly trained doctors at Smiles for Life wants to help you achieve and maintain a healthy smile for a lifetime. Because we want every patient to have access to the advanced treatments offered at our practice, we accept many insurance and financing options, including:
- Compassionate Finance™
- iCare Financial®
- Smile Rewards
To get started, call our Bridgewater office at (540) 828-2312 or request an appointment online.