February 22, 2021

What Are All-On-Four Dental Implants?


In a recent blog post, we discussed the different types of dental implants, one of which is all-on-4 dental implants. This post will go into greater detail and help answer questions you may be wondering such as:

  • What is an all-on-4 dental implant procedure?
  • Would I be a good candidate for this type of dental implant?
  • What should I know about all-on-four implants after the procedure?
  • What might an all-on-four dental implant cost? 
  • Where can I find a dentist for an all-on-4 dental implant procedure near me?

Just know that you are not alone. According to the American College of Prosthodontists, over 35 million Americans do not have any teeth, and 120 million are missing at least one tooth. While these numbers may be astonishing, thanks to advances in dental technology, many of these dental challenges can be solved and provide a set of pearly whites that look nearly identical to natural teeth. Let’s take a look and answer some common questions about all-on-four dental implants.

What are all-on-4 dental implants also known as full-arch fixed implant bridges?

What are all-on-4 dental implants? Thanks to technology, there are several options now when it comes to replacing missing or damaged teeth. One of those options can eliminate the need for removable dentures and can replace all of your teeth on the top or bottom of your mouth. During a full-arch fixed implant bridge procedure, four strategically positioned implants are placed in each arch, upper and lower, and the next day all of the teeth are permanently attached to the implants. Yes, the next day!  You may be wondering, why don’t I need an implant for each missing tooth? Since the implants are made of titanium, they are sturdy enough and will actually fuse to your jawbone to hold a full set of upper and/or lower teeth in place. They are strategically positioned oftentimes at four (sometimes six) anchor points in your jaw that will hold your new teeth in place, hence the name of all-on-four dental implants. They are a great option for a more permanent and natural tooth appearance compared to dentures. 

It’s understandable that many patients may seek out cost-conscious options and often venture outside of the U.S., but proceed with caution. Many implants used outside of the U.S. are not FDA approved and could cost you more in the long-run. Wherever you decide to receive dental implants, be sure that they are FDA-compliant and use approved materials. You certainly don’t want subpar material implanted in your jaw. 

Are all-on-4 dental implants right for me?

Each patient and each case is unique, so there is not a one-size-fits-all treatment when it comes to implants. It’s important to find a trusted dental professional for this procedure. The process will begin with an examination and consult along with x-rays and 3-D images to assess the damage and if you may be a good candidate. 

Some of the characteristics that can make for a good candidate for all-on-four dental implants include:

  • Patients with a high-volume of bone in the jaw to hold the implants
  • Those who are frustrated by loose dentures or want to avoid dentures altogether
  • The potential loss of all teeth
  • Individuals looking for a cost-efficient implant option
  • Non-smokers

What should I know after an all-on-four dental implant procedure? 

The recovery time for all-on-4 dental implants can vary, but it is shorter than the 3-8 month timeframe that is typical with traditional implants. All of the new teeth are attached to the implants the next day. This initial all-on-4 case will be in the mouth for about 4-6 months while the implants will start to fuse to your bone. At that point in time, the second or final restoration will be placed. After the dental implant procedure, your dentist will give you specific post-procedure details but rinsing with saltwater along with taking an oral antibiotic are common practices. Soon after, you will treat your new teeth just like natural teeth complete with daily flossing, brushing twice a day, and going for routine dental cleanings. It’s typically suggested that you stay close to home and limit activity for at least three days post-procedure, smoking is prohibited and only soft foods should be consumed. 

If proper care is maintained, all-on-4 dental implants can last up to 20 or more years and according to a study, the implant success rate over 10 years is over 94 percent. You will have a lifetime of beautiful smiles in your future! 

What do all-on 4-dental implants cost?

There is a myriad of factors to consider when it comes to the cost of all-on-four implants. Some of those factors being dental coverage, the number of teeth replaced, the type of implant used, etc. It’s best to contact your insurance provider or the dental office to find out more specific numbers.

Get All-On-4 Dental Implants in Coral Gables, FL

Are you looking for a dental practice that can help you when it comes to all-on-four dental implants? South Gables Dental is a top all-on-4 dental implant dentist in Coral Gables, Florida

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