When searching for a solution to replace missing teeth we are no longer limited to just dentures or partial dentures, there are now highly sophisticated dental implants available. Dental implants can be used for a variety of situations:
A dental implant replaces either an already missing tooth or a failing tooth that cannot be saved. Dental implants are only possible when there is enough good quality bone at the implant site to hold onto the dental implant securely. The dental implant fully replaces the missing tooth and its root and are considered to be the closest alternatives to natural teeth. Dental implants have a long history (over 50 years!) of research, proving they are a long-term, strong and aesthetic replacement for your natural teeth. These 50-year research papers are related to Nobel Biocare, the founders of both dental implants and the All-on-4 ‘full mouth’ technique.
Unlike dental crowns and partial dentures, dental implants replace an independent tooth and do not rely on neighbouring natural teeth for support. As well as replacing the tooth, dental implants actually integrate with your jaw bone just like your natural teeth. This prevents the usual bone loss that occurs after a tooth is extracted. The preservation of bone helps to maintain facial support, lip support, and gum support. For single implant tooth replacement or multiple teeth (3-4) implant bridges, the dental implant will need to be placed approximately three months prior to the tooth (porcelain crown). This is because the natural bone needs to integrate with the implant through a biological process called osseointegration. Allowing the bone and implant to fuse as one provides anchorage for the restored tooth, thus ensuring long-term strength and function.
The All-on-4™ technique secures a brand new set of teeth using four dental implants to provide a fixed, permanent solution to complex dental problems.
For full mouth reconstructions using dental implants and the All-on-4 technique, four dental implants are placed strategically into the jaw so that they can support an entire arch of 12 teeth. For people suffering from ill-fitting dentures, chronic gum disease, or very little healthy tooth structure remaining, All-on-4 treatment can place a full set of strong, functional and beautiful teeth in just a few days. Using All-on-4 dental implants instead of traditional dentures to replace a set of teeth can prevent bone loss, facial collapse, and denture problems. They look, function and feel like natural teeth and do not cover the palate.
This immediate loading is only possible due to the shared and even loading of the four implants. The implants are placed strategically to provide maximum strength, anchorage, and an even bite. If a tooth or multiple teeth have been missing for a long time, then the bone loss will have already occurred, and the bone in the proposed implant site may already be missing. The level of your bone and eligibility for dental implants is determined by a 3D bone scan and oral exam. If dental implants are not a suitable treatment or simply not possible, then alternative options such as porcelain bridges or partial/full dentures can be considered.
It is very common that we see patients who present to us a missing or damaged front tooth. This could be from a number of traumas but is generally from sports or accidents. In certain cases, and if suitable we can offer an immediate tooth replacement, however this varies on each individual patients circumstances. When for example, a patient is told that one of their front teeth cannot be saved, one of the biggest reservations is how long will they potentially have to go without a tooth? or will they have to wear a partial denture?
At ADAP Dr Adrian and the team have developed a technique where in selected cases patients can have their tooth implant and a temporary crown in one surgery meaning no downtime with a potential gap or missing tooth.
If you have any further questions or queries, don't hesitate to contact us.