Thanks to advances in dental materials, patients can have a light-weight full mouth implant solution that stays in place like normal teeth. The implant bridge can be supported by as little as four implants, a concept that was pioneered by, and is often referred to as All-On-Four®1 . Although depending on your unique situation, 5 or 6 implants to support each dental arch may often be recommended during treatment planning to optimize your long-term outcome.
All-On-Four is a registered trademark of Nobel Biocare.
A marked improvement over conventional dentures, implant retained dentures are an affordable way to benefit from dental implant stability. The implants hold the dentures in place, but still allow them to be removed and cleaned after meals. This removable aspect is due to special snaps, called locators, that are used to secure the denture to the implants. Ultimately, the denture rests on both the tissue and implants to allow for its stability. Implants placed for implant retained dentures can often be utilized if the patient ever decides to move into a fixed implant supported bridge at a later time.
Cleansability and cost are the major benefits of implant retained dentures when compared to an implant full arch bridge. Although there is much more material on these dentures than the implant supported bridge option, implant retained dentures allow the individual to completely clean the residual food debris that is generated with wear. Additionally, given that fewer implants are needed for this option, it is markedly less expensive.