Unfortunately, you have no teeth left and your prosthesis is making your life miserable: you feel insecure when in the company because it does not hold well, you only feed on soft food, your palate is covered and hence your feeling of taste is diminished? Or maybe you are aware that these problems are just behind the corner because you realize that the few teeth you have left should be pulled out soon? What to do?
Very rarely are the universal solutions the ideal ones – You are an individual and you deserve an individual and personalized solutions. The solution proposed will depend on your character and expectations, time and money you are ready to invest, bone and soft tissue dimensions and the expected aesthetic result. Here are some of the most common solutions:
Four implants, a bar and skeletal prosthesis
It is a classic, standard solution for a patient who wants something simple and verified. It is almost always a possible solution, even when the bone is considerably atrophied. The therapy requires 4-6 months and 5 visits to be completed. Both the complexity of the surgery and the price are moderate. The fact that it is a so-called “mobile” prosthesis is nothing to be concerned about. Nobody apart from you and your doctor will ever notice it – the palate is free, there is sufficient room for the tongue and skeletal prosthesis are so solidly fixed on the implants that you can laugh and chew freely.
Implant supported fixed denture
You have your mind set on fixed dental prosthesis? You have no desire to even try a classic or skeletal prosthesis firmly fixed on implants? In that case, it is necessary to place 8 implants per jaw. Usually, it is also necessary to reconstruct the bone in certain places. When the denture is done, the happiness of the patient is touching! Once again as it used to be! However: a full aesthetic analysis is required prior to the beginning of the therapy so that we can be sure that you will have not only firm teeth but also a pretty smile. In cases where the bone atrophy is at an advanced state (usually in patients who had been wearing the total prosthesis for years previous to the treatment) this kind of solution is not possible or is only possible after a series of bone reconstruction surgeries. Implant supported fixed dentures are the most demanding solution financially and, depending on the initial situation, the treatment requires 5-14 months.
All on four – All on six
You are in a hurry and you would like to have your fix teeth straight away, in 48 hours? This kind of fixed denture solution is one of the most recent ones, however, controlled monitoring of the patients has shown excellent results after 10 years of such denture being in function. The denture is fixed but thanks to the fact that the border implants are placed angularly, it is sufficient to use 4 implants in the lower jaw and 6 implants in the upper jaw. The downside: it is not an ideal solution for the aesthetically demanding areas or more precisely for the upper jaw in patients with short upper lip whose gingiva is exposed when smiling. However, it is of excellent function in the lower jaw. The advantage: You can have fix teeth within 24-48 hours, no major bone reconstruction is required and it is usually possible to place the implants as soon as the few remaining teeth had been removed. After 3-6 months, the temporary bridge is being replaced with a permanent. Financially speaking, this would be a middle solution.
This, however, is not all
There are also mini implants that are of preference in patients limited because of their health condition or their financial situation. It is good to know that in a great number of cases provisory implants that fix the prosthesis or the bridge can be used as well as the remaining teeth.
Don’t forget: Your therapy has to be dictated by your personal anatomy, your wishes and your needs, and your being ready to invest time and money and must not be limited by the preferences of the team of dental medicine doctors. The team you have chosen is there to guide you and help you make decisions, it may sometimes even make a decision for you, but while doing this, it also has to offer and have complete knowledge of the whole spectrum of possible therapies.