With this technique, the oral surgeon places four dental implants toward the front of the jaw to support a denture, rather than using many more dental implants for the same purpose. This approach takes advantage of the pattern of jawbone atrophy following tooth loss. The bone toward the rear of the jaw erodes more quickly than that at the front.
All-on-Four builds on the same technology associated with traditional dental implants. The foundation of the treatment is the osseointegration process in which the jaw bone bonds with the surface of the dental implant, leaving the implant as a permanent fixture in the mouth.
The two outer dental implants in All-on-Four are inserted slightly differently than standard implants, however. They are angled underneath the gumline so as to provide the most posterior support possible for the rear teeth in the prosthetic arch.
The most significant difference between All-on-Four and traditional dental implants is the need for fewer implants to restore the smile. This characteristic of this treatment option makes All-on-Four dental implants a more accessible option for a wider range of patients.
If patients needed numerous dental implants to support a denture, including implants at the rear of the jaw, long-term denture wearers might find that they were not eligible for such treatment because they had already lost too much bone material and because the sinus cavities may have pneumatized down. If there is inadequate bone, the patient faces a higher risk of implant failure.
All-on-Four overcomes that obstacle since the four implants can be placed at the front of the jaw, where the bone is more stable over time.
Patients who want to benefit from dental implants but may have already suffered from a significant amount of bone loss should explore the All-on-Four method. Contact the ORA office of Steven Koos DDS, MD to see if this intervention may be appropriate in your case.