If you are considering the All on 4 dental implant procedure, there are a variety of items to consider.
How do I select the right dentist, and how will I know if they are experienced?
Will I leave with a new set of permanent teeth on the day of the procedure, and how long is the recovery time?
There are certainly a lot of questions related to the procedure itself. But for many individuals, the decision to select a dentist and book the procedure comes down to your level of comfort with the dentist – and the cost. So, how much should dental implants cost?
WHAT’S THE COST OF ALL-ON-4 DENTAL IMPLANTS?
The truth is there are a variety of items to consider. So in this instalment of #AskDrCurrie, we find out how to assess the costs of dental implants.
What dictates the cost of All on 4 dental implants?
When assessing the cost of All on 4 dental implants, it’s important to understand the true definition of the procedure.
With that in mind, the All on 4 procedure replaces a full arch of teeth with dental implants that are fixed, and they do not come out. This procedure takes place in a single day, and it takes place with nobel biocare products.
So when assessing pricing options, you need to ensure the items listed above are being satisfied. Why does this matter? Because not every dentist follows the same procedural guidelines.
Some dentists will remove your teeth, place the implants, and then set you up with temporary dentures for a period of 6 months. It will take the bone in your mouth 4-6 months for the osseointegration process to take place (the bone grows around the implant). So you are left with a temporary denture for half a year, and that can be difficult for some people.
So the true advantage of the All on 4 procedure is you get new teeth in a day – which is also why the procedure is so attractive.
So it’s important to ask the question… Will you get new teeth the same day? It’s also important to ask if the dentist is using nobel biocare products because they developed the All on 4 protocol and procedure.
On the topic of products, another consideration is the bridge itself. On the day of the procedure, an initial bridge is placed – but it is a temporary bridge. You will wear that for the initial 4 – 6 months while the osseointegration process takes place (your bone heals around the implant).
Once that healing process is complete, your final bridge is provided. We will never create a final bridge out of acrylic – it’s not strong enough. Most of the time what you’ll do is acrylic with a titanium enforced bar. Zirconia is another material that we use for certain individuals. Different materials make a difference for different people – so we always take time to assess the best options for each individual.
How do you know if the dentist / surgeon is experienced?
The All on 4 dental implant procedure is 12 – 15 years old – so it is still relatively new technology. So it’s important to understand how many procedures the dentist has completed, how experienced they are, and how they go about creating individualized plans for their patients.
Personally, I have been supporting patients with the All on 4 procedure for over 10 years, and I definitely believe that experience matters. The most skilled All on 4 dental practitioners remain very humble because they understand that every case is different, and the learning never stops. It requires surgical skill, cosmetic dental experience, and the understanding of how to manage gum tissue.
Just as importantly, it is important to help the patient feel at ease about the procedure, the recovery time, and the end result. The more experience you get, the more you realize how much you need to individualize your planning for each person. It may sound like a one size fits all treatment, but there is a lot of variation in how you carry it out – and that’s something that comes from experience.
Some people have no teeth, some have all their teeth, some are losing their teeth due to cavities. Some have gum diseases – so how we approach those surgeries will be different for each person. Experience allows you to plan accordingly. We are always working to perfect our craft, and many of the dentists that I respect the most are humble about what they do.
What do you say to people that are nervous about the procedure?
Ironically, the All on 4 procedure can be easier and less painful than wearing dentures. That surprises many people, but it’s true. Here’s why…
If you have teeth removed, the dentures sit on top of an open wound. So you have an impermanent foreign body resting on wounds – and that can be very uncomfortable.
Conversely, the All on 4 procedure acts like a bandaid to protect the wound, and you leave with a permanent solution. So someone that has All on 4 will have less pain and less discomfort than someone who wears a denture after they get their teeth removed.
Aside from that, patients have the option to be sedated for the procedure. So on the day of the procedure, we have oral sedatives to help the patient relax. But on a personal note, we also provide every All on 4 patient with a list of our other patients that are willing to talk about the procedure. The truth is that people usually fear what they don’t understand. So by talking to other patients that are thrilled with the results, they can chat about the outcome, and it tends to put their mind at ease.
Are offshore dental implant procedures legitimate?
Offshore dental implant procedures may use the same parts, and they may have the same training, but for me the biggest objection is that All on 4 is not an event. It’s important to work with a dentist that can support your long term oral health.
Aside from planning the procedure, you need someone to deal with potential complications, to guide you through the healing process, and to help you in the years to come with the long term stability of your bridge.
For instance, the first 6 months is critical. You need someone watching the implants to ensure the osseointegration process is going to plan (that your bone is healing around the implant). Because even though you don’t feel the healing process as it unfolds, it will take 4 – 6 months and your dentist should be diligent in tracking the healing process.
So I think that’s the biggest drawback of having the procedure performed abroad. If there is an issue, you can deal with it quickly with someone that you’ve established a relationship with. But if you’ve elected to have the procedure offshore, who helps you with potential issues after you return home?
At Pearl Dental, every 6 months we take the bridge off and clean the mouth, and ensure there are no issues, or food being caught. So the post operative care is really important to us.
Who pays for any potential complications of offshore dental implant procedures?
That’s a good question. One of the other considerations about All one 4 costs is potential complications.
At Pearl Dental, the entire procedure is all inclusive – and that includes dealing with any potential complications. If there are any issues, you will never receive extra bill along the way. If there are issues, we deal with it and ensure our patients are happy with the results. I also provide my cell phone number to our patients, so if there are any issues they can call me directly, and we will fix the problem.
For additional information, please contact Pearl Dental or give us a call at 905-637-1698.