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If you have lost quite a few teeth and have been putting up with an uncomfortable denture, you may be wondering whether there is an alternative to that or the expense and arduous process of replacing those teeth with dental implants.

As you may know, there are advantages of implants over dentures. With proper care, they can be a more or less permanent solution, lasting 10-20 years or more. That is because they stop the natural erosion of the jawbone that comes with the loss of teeth and aging. Dentures do not do that, which is why they have to be readjusted every five years or so, depending on your genetics and individual oral health.



Each dental implant, however, requires separate surgery to place it in the socket and then 3-6 months of healing before it is connected by an abutment to the tooth-like crown that is put on top.

Now, however, there is a solution that has the advantages of dental implants, but does not require so much surgery. This is the revolutionary new All-on-4. 

Think of this as a platform that is placed on top of the gums where your teeth would be. On it are whatever type and number of crowns needed for the teeth being replaced, typically half of the lower or upper arch of 18 (fewer if you have had wisdom teeth pulled). But it is anchored by just four implants, instead of up to nine that would be needed for a full set of single implants. This can be especially helpful for anyone who does not have a lot of jawbone and doing individual implants would not be viable.


The All-on-4 can also speed up the entire process of surgery, healing, and implant placement, much more quickly restoring the ability to chew comfortably, talk normally, and being able to smile without revealing missing teeth. It is also less expensive and much more comfortable than having each tooth replaced individually.

Of course, as with all efforts to replace or improve teeth, whether they be bridges, dentures, orthodontic work, veneers, or crowns, the durability of any form of implants depends on how well you take care of your oral health. Healthy gums and teeth–be they real or artificial–are a collaboration between you and your dentist that never ends.

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