Our teeth are paramount in living a healthy and happy life — serving both a functional and aesthetic purpose. Hence, it is important that we take care of them. After all, we only have two sets in our lifetime. That is, unless we get dental implants.
With advancements in technology, All-on-4 dental implants offer a simple and efficient solution to getting a full set of dental implants in just a day.
What are All-on-4 Dental Implants?
All-on-4 is a revolutionary technique in the realm of oral rehabilitation, used in dentistry and designed to give patients dental implants on the very same day — making this implant treatment more efficient and in certain ways, a more superior form of providing new sets of teeth for patients.
It is a surgical procedure that requires the implementation of dental prosthesis, with its main goal to help treat patients with badly broken teeth or even compromised teeth due to diseases or decay.
To better understand what this procedure is all about, here's a beginner's guide to what exactly is All-on-4 dental implants
How do All-on-4 Dental Implants work?
Founded by Portuguese dentist Paulo Malo, All-on-4 dental implants are named after the complex procedure it requires, which involves just four dental implants to support a full set of teeth.
Widely regarded as the gold standard in full-arch implant rehabilitation, all-on-4 implants can be placed on both the upper and lower jaw, and are faster than your typical dental implants — with patients coming into the clinic in the morning and leaving in the evening with a full set of brand new teeth.
This, when compared to traditional methods requiring at least 4 months, boasts a much quicker and fuss-free method of helping patients with their dental health.
The All-on-4 treatment concept is a groundbreaking one. In my years of practice, it has proven to provide immense patient satisfaction.
Difference between All-on-4 and Traditional Implants?
There are many differences between all-on-4 and traditional dental implants and many of them are based on what the individual patient needs.
The all-on-4 treatment concept revolves around providing patients with a permanent, screw-retained replacement for their entire upper or lower set of teeth with a bridge and can be done all in a single day. This treatment is usually recommended if the patient’s dental health is declining rapidly and requires a full new set of teeth.
Furthermore, if multiple implants are needed, all-on-4 is widely recommended because it is more cost-effective, requires less treatment time, and needs less surgeries.
This technique helps the patients save money on bone grafting and removes the cost of multiple surgeries. All-on-4 dental implants are also less of a hassle in terms of aftercare. It is easy to keep the device clean when compared to traditional dental implants.
Who needs All-on-4 Dental Implants?
Now that you have a rough idea on how all-on-4 dental implants work and how they differ from traditional implants, you may be wondering what kind of patients are suitable for all-on-4 implants and who should stick to traditional implants.
The four main categories of patients that require compulsory all-on-4 treatment are as follows. If you find yourself nodding towards any of these questions, perhaps getting All-on-4 dental implants would be ideal for you and may benefit you more than traditional implants or removable dentures.
Do you eat lots of hard food?
The first group of people that require all-on-4 dental implants are those that regularly eat hard food but do not have the teeth or dentures to sustain prolonged hard impact to their teeth.
As such, all-on-4 dental implants are recommended to help substitute full dentures. All-on-4 dental implants would then help to replace their teeth or dentures, allowing them to simulate having strong, healthy teeth.
Do you have terminal dentition?
People that require all-on-4 dental implants are those with terminal dentition. Terminal dentition is the point in time where an individual’s teeth are so diseased that they have a hopeless prognosis and must be replaced with something new.
This may be due to different gum diseases that can affect their teeth or accidents that make their teeth to be unsalvageable. As such, all-on-4 dental implants help to replace their teeth with a new set of dental implants. As all-on-4 dental implants are the gold standard and preferred choice in the changing of multiple teeth, it is the most recommended technique in combating terminal dentition.
Do you want a full set of new teeth?
All-on-4 dental implants are also ideal for people who want a completely new set of teeth.
This can be due to a variety of reasons ranging from aesthetic motivations to accidents, or gum diseases. These patients do not necessarily have terminal dentition, but may or may not be progressing steadily towards that outcome.
For such patients, the cost of changing their teeth one by one incurs a much bigger cost than all-on-4 dental implants, making them one of the prime candidates for All-on-4 dental implants.
Do you want to avoid bone grafting?
Lastly, patients that require massive bone grafting or patients that do not want to undergo bone grafting and require implants. Bone grafts are required for traditional implants when there is not enough bone to support the implant.
All-on-4 dental implants are recommended for these patients as bone grafting is not part of the treatment process. This is a more cost and time-efficient choice as it cuts down the number of procedures needed.
Benefits of All-on-4 Dental Implants
By now, it shouldn’t come as a shock that All-on-4 dental implants bring about many benefits that cannot be attained through traditional methods. This revolutionary technique that shortens treatment time and lowers cost also brings about many other benefits as well.
Besides the two benefits mentioned above, all-on-4 can also provide:
- Immediate results - Have a new set of teeth the very same day as treatment
- Improve appearance - All-on-4 treatment helps to take 20 years off a person’s smile
- Improve eating habits - Allows patients to enjoy eating what they love
- Enhance your quality of life
- Eliminate health issues related to teeth
- Easy maintenance for teeth
Long gone are the days where patients have to return to have their teeth replaced, as all-on-4 dental implants help to create a permanent set of fixed teeth with an implant-supported bridge that is unremovable, allowing individuals to have that perfect smile that they always wanted.
The lifespan of All-on-4 Dental Implants
All-on-4 dental implants are permanent and are unremovable.
However, although it provides patients with a brand new set of teeth and helps provide easier cleaning and better quality of life, All-on-4 dental implants will have a shortened lifespan when not taken care of properly, leading to possible complications.
That being said, as long as good dental hygiene is practiced, the implant will last forever, with patients only needing to replace the bridge every time it wears down.
It is no doubt that good dental hygiene promotes good dental health and helps keep your gums and teeth strong and healthy. Although All-on-4 dental implants are not the same as natural teeth, they require the same care and hygiene practices to ensure that they live up to their permanent status.
Failing to practice good dental health and cultivating bad lifestyle habits not only causes dental implants to deteriorate, but can also be detrimental to your health as a whole.
One such example is the lack of oral hygiene after patients receive their new set of teeth after an All-on-4 procedure. The misconception that artificial teeth do not require the same amount of care as real teeth are one of the leading causes of failed All-on-4 implants.
When patients get lazy and do not practice good dental hygiene and clean the implants, the teeth may deteriorate again, making the All-on-4 procedure obsolete and rendering it useless. Additionally, All-on-4 dental implants require patients to go for routine cleaning and follow-ups at the dentist, and failure to do so due to lack of discipline or laziness will also compromise the integrity of the implant.
Read also: 5 Reasons Why Dental Implants Fail
Smoking is another main cause of the failure of all-on-4 dental implants. Patients that smoke also can cause complications in their dental implants as tar can deposit on and around the implants, leading to potential degradation of the implant.
Bruxism or Teeth Grinding
Another condition that may compromise the integrity of the all-on-4 dental implant and reduce its lifespan is bruxism.
In this condition, the individual unconsciously grinds and clenches their teeth, even when asleep. As such, although the implants are strong and are made to withstand strong impacts, the constant grinding and clenching of the jaw will cause the gradual degradation of the implants and may even eventually break through it. As such, night guards are usually administered to help protect the implants during sleep.
What can I expect from an All-on-4 Dental Implant procedure?
The process is usually categorized into two parts, the consultation and the day of surgery.
During the consultation, the patient is required to bring copies of x-rays from their previous dentists if applicable. To help their dentist understand what they expect from the procedure, patients are encouraged to bring photos of what they look like before, and to communicate their desires and concerns with their dentist.
A CT scan would also be taken to ensure that everything is fine with the patient, as well as help the dentist get a rough idea of what he/she is working with. Complications and side effects of the procedures are also let known to the patient so they can perform their own risk evaluation. When everything is confirmed, the date for the procedure will then be determined.
During the day of the procedure, patients are usually required to come in early in the morning as the procedure is long and takes almost a full day of work.
When the patient first enters the clinic, they have their molds taken and sent to the dental lab, which is usually on-site. From there, the molds are analyzed and given to the dentist before the procedure can begin. From there, anesthesia would be administered to the patient before the procedure begins. Patients do not feel any pain during the actual procedure and walk out of the clinic with a new set of teeth at the end of the day.
After the procedure, there will be the presence of dull aches and swelling of the gums in the affected area. This can be combated with painkillers and homeopathic medication. From there, patients are strongly advised to keep good dental health and are only allowed to have soft foods for eight weeks. Patients have to return after a week for bridge cleaning and another week later for the removal of stitches.
From then on, maintaining stellar dental health is crucial and patients are advised to:
- Brush their teeth at least twice a day
- Clean out their implants with a water pick every night before bed
- Visit the dentist every six months for a thorough cleaning and follow-up with the doctor
Cost of All-on-4 Treatment in Singapore
The ballpark range of standard all-on-4 treatment is $23,000 in Singapore, with the complicated cases ranging up to $25,000.
Different types of bridges also vary in cost. Acrylic bridges cost around $7000. Alternatively, for a sturdier and long-lasting option, ceramic bridges cost about $22,000.
Depending on the needs of the individual, the presence of cheek implants raises the cost based on complexity. All these prices are subject to individual practitioners and it is important that you check with your dentist first before proceeding with the treatment.
All-on-4 dental implant procedures are not cheap as they provide lasting teeth and help improve your quality of life immensely. However, it brings about many benefits such as increased confidence, decreased dental health problems, and most importantly, a better smile.
Much like any other major organ in our system, our teeth play a pivotal role in helping us maintain a healthy body and also does loads for our self-esteem! It is important to give your teeth as much care and you would for any other part of your body.
Studies have shown that the first thing people take notice of when meeting someone new is their teeth. People with straight and healthy teeth are perceived as more successful, smarter and attractive.
It is paramount that everyone takes care of their teeth regardless of their age, and lucky for us, if we haven’t been doing so — because All-on-4 dental implants give us a second chance at having that million-dollar smile. Just make sure to keep them clean this time!
If you are considering All-on-4 dental implants, this article will tell you why you should choose Nuffield Dental as your treatment provider.
Alternatively, here's a list of dental services that we provide at Nuffield Dental.
You may book an appointment with us through this contact form.
About Dr Kumar:
As an undergraduate, Dr Samintharaj Kumar was the first South-East Asian recipient for the David B. Scott Research Fellowship Award from the International Association for Dental Research. In 2001, he obtained his bachelors in Dentistry.
In 2001, he obtained his bachelors in Dentistry. While at medical school he received awards from the British Association of Plastic Surgeons, British Association of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons, The Royal College of Physicians and The Wellcome Trust. He was also awarded the Drummond and Frank Scott Prize. , the British Association of Plastic Surgeons, British Association of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons, The Royal College of Physicians and The Wellcome Trust.
For more information about the All-on-4 dental service provided by Dr Kumar, visit his website to understand what you can expect when you choose Nuffield Dental as your treatment provider.
You may also read more about the topic of dental implants here. We have an array of dental implants related questions and articles which will definitely be useful for you.