Edentulous patients now have different options to restore complete smiles, so it’s important to carefully evaluate all of the choices to make sure that you are selecting the most appropriate intervention for your case. Here is a comparison of a type of implant-supported dentures known as All-on-4 and conventional dentures.
Structural connection to the jaw: All-on-4 uses four dental implants to anchor the prosthetic arch, and after the oral surgeon places those implants the surrounding bone fuses with those four implants to provide a great deal of stability and hold the appliance in place. Conventional dentures, on the other hand, rely on denture adhesives and have no physical link to the jaw.
Functionality: Implant-supported dentures tend to approximate the chewing function of biological teeth more effectively than standard dentures. Many patients who wear conventional dentures find that they have to eliminate certain foods from their diets, while All-on-4 patients can continue to enjoy a varied diet. Of course neither traditional denture wearers nor people with implant-supported dentures should attempt to chew anything that could damage natural teeth. Ask your oral surgeon about any other foods that may be off-limits for people with implant-supported dentures.
Care and maintenance: Whether you have implant-supported dentures or conventional ones, it’s important to keep your gumline clean to prevent gum disease that could cause bone loss that negatively affects both dental implants and conventional dentures. You will need to clean under the prosthetic, around the implants if you choose All-on-4, so make sure you get adequate instruction on the appropriate technique.
Longevity: Following tooth loss, the jawbone will wear away because the roots of the teeth are no longer available to stabilize it. Consequently, the shape of the jaw will change over time. Because dental implants act as artificial tooth roots, they can prevent jawbone erosion, and the implant-supported denture will retain its fit. In contrast, a conventional denture will not fit as well as the jaw’s contour evolves, and the appliance likely will need to be re-lined or replaced after a number of years.
For additional details on All-on-4 and conventional dentures, schedule a consultation with our team at Central Oklahoma Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Associates. Call 405-624-1300 today to reserve your appointment.