Implant supported full arch bridgesAndrew Lanier
What are implant supported full arch bridges?
Implant supported full arch bridges are for patients who are missing all, or the majority, of their teeth. A dental implant is a small screw, usually made from titanium alloys, that is surgically embedded into the jawbone to provide an artificial root to hold replacement teeth or dentures in place. Implants supported full arch bridges are dental bridges that are anchored to dental implants providing a secure, natural-looking and permanent solution for patients with few or no teeth.
Although dental implant surgery can seem to be quite an unsettling experience for patients, especially if having several dental implants inserted, it must be remembered that it is a fairly common, routine procedure.Dental implant surgery is ordinarily performed under a local anesthetic, although particularly anxious patients may prefer general anesthesia, which is also an option to consider if, for example, extensive treatment such as bone grafts are to be carried out.The first part of the procedure to insert a dental implant involves making an incision into the gum and then drilling a hole into the jawbone. The dental implant is then inserted into the jaw bone and the gum stitched over the implant. The patient is then left to heal for 3 - 6 months, although it could be longer after a bone graft procedure.After the allotted healing time has elapsed, the patient returns to their dentist for the second stage of the dental implant procedure. Here, the incision is excised, exposing the dental implant, and caps are placed over the ends. These caps will attach to a false tooth, removable dentures or to implants supported full arch bridges.Advantages of implants supported full arch bridges
Dental bridges and dental implants are a long-term solution for tooth loss. The main benefits to patients is in being able to eat pretty much any food they like and having their smile restored, which in turn leads to renewed confidence. Esthetically pleasing, implants supported full arch bridges often look better than a patient's original teeth, making them look younger and much more secure about their appearance. They also prevent bone loss, which maintains the patient's facial structure, and adds to the overall improvement in appearance.Disadvantages of implants supported full arch bridges
Not all patients are suitable for dental implant surgery. Elderly patients, in particular, are vulnerable to slow healing processes, which may render the implants unstable or susceptible to infection. Although with good oral hygiene and regular check-ups it is less likely that dental implants will fail, there is always that possibility. Also, dental implants are not a quick-fix solution, and generally require several visits to the dentist over a good many months. Finally, perhaps one of the biggest disadvantages of implants supported full arch bridges for the majority of people is cost, as it is not the cheapest option.However, many patients after treatment have said that it was worth it just to have their dazzling smiles restored.
Other great resources
This article is meant for information purposes only and is not intended to be dental advice or instructions for dental diagnosis or treatment. Please consult with your dentist or a qualified dental professional before starting or changing dental treatment