All-on-4 dental implants are a popular treatment option for patients with missing or failing teeth. They provide a long-lasting and comfortable alternative to individual tooth implants or dentures. They’re sturdy and generally maintenance-free—if properly taken care of—but how long do they last and what can you do to make sure yours are well taken care of?
How Long do All-On-4 Implants Last?
There are a number of factors that determine how long All-On-4 implants can last. Long-term studies have indicated that most All-On-4 implants last well over 10 years, and perhaps as long as 20 years or more. One such study found that after 5 years, 98.1% of All-On-4 implants were still successfully in place, and after 10 years, 94.8% remained functional. Meaning that, even after 10 years, most people’s implants are still standing strong.
Of course, there are many variables that may affect the longevity of all-on-4 implants, such as the health and strength of your jawbone, and how well you follow post-surgery instructions.
How To Successfully Maintain All-On-4 Implants
There are 3 basic aspects of effective maintenance for All-On-4 implants: following post-surgery instructions carefully, eating appropriate foods for some time after the procedure, and keeping up with dental hygiene best practices.
Follow Post-Surgery Instructions
For 72 hours after the surgery, it is important that you rest at home and take it easy. All hard, crunchy, or chewy foods should be strictly avoided. You should also avoid pulling at your lips or cheeks, or trying to examine the surgical site on your own.
If you have questions about what you can or cannot do or eat, contact your doctor.
Watch Your Diet After Surgery
For 3 months after the surgery, you should follow a diet of soft foods. For example, food items should be chopped, pureed, or mashed to make them easy to chew and swallow. Such food items may include:
- Apple sauce
- Cooked or ripe fruit
- Canned fruits or vegetables that have no tough or chewy skin
- Steamed or mashed vegetables (like mashed potatoes)
- Broiled fish
- Soup with very small or soft pieces of meat
- Soft bread
- Scrambled eggs
- Ice cream
Practice Proper Dental Hygiene and Develop a Routine
During the first week post-surgery, you will likely need to use a monoject syringe to gently clean beneath your dentures.Afterwards, you will need to maintain a strong routine of oral hygiene by regularly brushing, flossing and rinsing. You may also want to use mouthwash to reduce the chances of a gum infection.
Again, if you have questions about proper dental hygiene for your All-On-4 dental implants, contact your doctor.
What Can Damage All-On-4 Implants?
There are several things that could cause All-On-4 implants to suffer damage, or even early failure. For example, here are a few things that could harm your implants:
- Alcohol or tobacco consumption during the first few weeks post-surgery is not recommended since this may impede the healing process.
- Chewing hard foods in the first 3 months after the procedure may lead to implant failure.
- Failure to implement proper oral hygiene can result in an infection which may cause damage to the implants.
All-On-4 implants can last a long time and will provide comfort and confidence if properly cared for and if you follow all procedures and guidelines provided by your doctor.
If you believe that you may need all-on-4 implants, or are interested in learning more about this treatment option, schedule an appointment today with a member of our team at North Shore Smile Surgery.