The Practical Side of All on Four

Dentures are fine, but All on Four will change the way you eat and enjoy your food so you enjoy it more. Whether you are already wearing dentures, or just facing having some teeth removed, it is never too early to start planning the All on Four process.


“Once you start getting implants, you are building the future of your mouth,” says Dr. Carol Ford from her Phoenix cosmetic dentistry office. “An implant takes the place of your natural tooth, and it performs in the same way,” she adds. An implant has two pieces—the bottom anchor that is embedded in the bone of the jaw, and the top portion that looks just like a real tooth and is attached by a screw-mechanism to the implanted portion.

Implants are an excellent solution for teeth that are damaged or lost due to sports or other accidents.

Implants are also useful to replace teeth that can’t be saved because of decay.

“Often my older patients think they can’t have implants because they are already wearing dentures,” says Dr. Ford. “But that’s not true. If there is enough bone left, an implant may well be possible. And if there is not enough bone left, there are many ways to generate bone that could then make an implant work,” she adds, explaining, “But if you don’t ask your dentist, you won’t get a good answer. Don’t guess. Start the discussion.”

Implants are long-lasting solutions. The American Dental Association has done studies that show that implants, with regular care are between 98.1 percent and 99.2 percent successful after five and ten years, respectively.

What if you already have implants, but they are in the “wrong” place for All on Four? The procedure called All on Four uses four or sometimes more implants to support a complete upper bridge. The location of those implants is a pattern to make the permanent dentures stable and natural.

If your existing implants are in a place that is not useful to keep the denture stable, the dentist may remove the top or “tooth” portion and leave the implant in the bone. “The implant stabilizes the bone,” explains Dr. Ford, “and often there is no need to worry about it staying put.”

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