Last fact-checked: 20 May 2019
Save a life-changing two-thirds on the cost of All-on-4® in Colombia. This dental implant procedure gives you a natural-looking smile with secure teeth replacements that don’t shift, wobble or fall out. If dentures don’t appeal or feel uncomfortable, then an affordable option (compared to the incredibly high prices for this procedure at home) is to visit a dentist in Colombia.
The All-on-4 procedure, which you may also see written as “All-on-Four,” essentially replaces a complete arch of your teeth on just four dental implants. It is most suitable if you have already lost all (or most) of your teeth and, unlike the traditional implant procedure, it can also be carried out on patients who have bone loss without the need for a bone graft, providing there is still enough viable bone to work with.
The procedure was pioneered by Dr Paulo Malo, a specialist implantologist from Lisbon, Portugal. Using his protocol, it is carried out across the world and has now become a fairly common procedure.
The All-on-4 procedure differs from traditional implants in a number of other ways as well. The rear implants in the procedure are longer than traditional implants: these are inserted into the jaw bone at a 45-degree angle rather than 90-degrees, which provides a larger surface area for them the integrate with the jawbone.
The complete procedure, including removal of remaining teeth, insertion of implants and attachment of temporary teeth, can all be carried out in one session (hence the name ‘teeth in a day’, which the procedure is often called). This is a much quicker turnaround than traditional implants where the attachment of the crown (replacement tooth) is usually be done least three-to-six months after the implant has been inserted.
What is Involved in the All-on-4 Treatment?
While the actual All-on-4 procedure is carried out in only one session, there is, as you would expect, a good deal of consultation and planning required in the run-up to the treatment. Briefly, the treatment steps include:
1: Initial Consultation & Assessment: After you’ve booked your appointment with Dental Departures, digital x-rays can be emailed to your dentist in Colombia prior to your trip so that your suitability for the procedure can be determined. Once you arrive in Colombia you will have an initial consultation, examination and assessment with the dentist, who will also take further x-rays and scans to confirm your suitability. This also allows them to obtain a detailed plan of your jaw for optimum placement of the implants. At this point, impressions of your mouth are taken so that your new teeth can be made, ready to fit on the day of your procedure.
It’s worth noting that if you have any remaining teeth, they will have to be removed. The dentist in Colombia can do this, but it means your new teeth will be temporary and lighter to give your jaw and soft tissues time to heal. In this case, you will return in three months’ time to get your new, permanent teeth. Alternately, it may be worthwhile getting your teeth extracted at home, some months before you travel to Colombia.
2: Treatment Day: The All-on4 procedure is carried out under a local anesthetic or conscious sedation. Any remaining teeth are first removed. The dentist will make cuts in the gumline at the points that the implants are to be inserted into the jaw. A small hole is made in the jaw at these points, and the implants then placed. Once in position, the new teeth are attached. The process typically takes around two hours for each jaw.
● Modern Facilities: Colombia’s dental clinics that cater to dental tourists are generally contemporary and well-equipped with the latest diagnostic and therapeutic technologies. Digital x-rays, 3D/CT scanning and CAD/CAM (computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacture) are some of the newer technologies you can expect to find, ensuring quick turnaround times and long-lasting results. Check out some of the top-rated clinics in Colombia below:
● Centro de Implantes de la Costa by Julio Oliver in Cartagena
● Dentica by Cristina Suaza in Bogota
● International Smiles in Medellin
● Easily Accessible: For Americans and Canadians, Colombia is quick and easy to reach with direct flights into not just Bogota, the capital city, but also other popular tourist destinations, such as Medellin and Cartagena.
● Great Prices: The prices are considerably lower than at home, and Colombia is a good choice for a dental holiday (so long as you remember to schedule your travel prior to your procedure (as you will want to spend any post-op time recuperating and healing).
Compare the All-on-4 prices in Colombia with dentists in your home country:
All-on-4s cost – at home
All-on-4s cost – Colombia
Are All-on-4s a Good Procedure to Have in Colombia as a Dental Tourist?
If you are looking to make the most of a holiday while saving a fortune on good-quality dental care, then answer to the above question is a firm ‘yes’. Contrary to how it actually sounds, many people experience little in the way of downtime after the procedure. There may be a little swelling or bruising but generally, you should be able to enjoy sightseeing and other low-key activities one or two days after your procedure. Or, you may elect to take your time off before you hit the dentist chair.
And this is the beauty of Colombia —whether you’re staying in one location or visiting a couple, there’s so much to see and do. Getting around between cities is reasonably easy and cheap on a domestic flight—so why not make the most of it and see as much of this fascinating country as you can?
Despite its influx of crowds and concrete, the capital of Bogata does have its plus points; it’s worth spending a day or two strolling around La Candelaria’s cobbled, colonial streets sampling local delicacies and shopping for handicrafts and artisan goods. From craft breweries to graffiti tours showcasing some of the capital’s exceptional street murals, the creative spirit is alive and kicking here.
Art and community feature heavily throughout the country, perhaps nowhere more so than in Medellin. Infamous for being the home of drug baron Pablo Escobar, the city is shaking off its former image with a trendy arts scene, a cable car network affording terrific views of the mountains and a growing tourism industry attracting all kinds of visitors.
The same goes for Cartagena, one of the jewels in Colombia’s crown that promises heaps of history and easy access to some idyllic islands. A beautiful colonial port city on Colombia’s Caribbean coast, its riches were founded on slavery and gold. It remains a sight for sore eyes with its colorful colonial buildings decked with flowers flowing from wrought iron balconies hovering above pretty cobbled streets. The top of the ancient city walls affords great views across the sea and are a terrific spot for cocktails as the sun goes down. The Rosario Islands, Providencia and Santa Catalina all provide great diving opportunities and are just a short boat ride away from Cartagena.
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Krans, Brian. Bone Graft. Healthline. 6 November 2018. https://www.healthline.com/health/bone-graft
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Moseley-Williams, Sorrel. 10 Things to Do in Cartagena des Indias. The Independent. 8 September 2017. https://www.independent.co.uk/travel/americas/cartagena-de-indias-things-to-do-what-see-attractions-colombia-caribbean-coast-las-murallas-salsa-a7934891.html
Radhika. 10 Reasons to Visit Medellin in Colombia. The Evening Standard. 18 January 2018. https://www.standard.co.uk/lifestyle/travel/medellin-colombia-reasons-to-visit-where-to-stay-eat-a3741736.html