The final part of this series looks at the quality of the materials used by the All on 4 Clinic and the type of final teeth you choose.
The type of dental implants you select is important. Implants placed in your jaw should remain there for the rest of your life. Do do you really want to live with ‘copy’ or ‘generic’ quality implants forever?
Here’s why you should only accept dental implants from reputable, well-established manufacturers:
- Established implant companies (some around since the 70’s) have spent decades building up expertise that newer companies can’t match.
- The implants in your jaw may need replacement parts like new screws or posts (known as abutments and are the bits that hold the tooth) over time. Established companies are less likely to disappear making it easier to get your spare parts.
- Your implants are recognised wherever you go. We see cases in our clinic where patients have implants that are not available in Australia. It’s then difficult to identify the implant and even more challenging to get the spare parts needed. A quick and easy procedure ends up wasting countless hours, not to mention possibly costing you more.
- Long-serving brands have hundreds of research studies published on their products; other less established brands have few if any.
The potential problems related to lesser-known companies are not worth the short-term financial cost saving, especially if you average the savings over the number of years your implants will serve you.
Choosing your final teeth
What are titanium hybrid teeth?
What’s a Zirconia and titanium bridge?
What’s the difference between acrylic and porcelain teeth?
What does all this jargon mean?
This is where it all starts to get somewhat confusing.
To make sense of all of this information there are only three things that matter to patients when it comes to All on 4 teeth:
- What structure is underneath the teeth: beneath your new teeth there needs to be some sort of structure that makes them strong, durable and not likely to bend and break.
- How they are made and what they are made from.
- What will my teeth look like?
So let’s cover these three things.
Underneath your final teeth, you’ll have metal to make the teeth strong. This metal will either be Titanium (like your dental implants) or Zirconia a white metal. These are materials of choice as they are lightweight and sturdy. The Zirconia option will always be more expensive as it is more difficult to make.
Your final teeth are made from either acrylic denture (plastic) teeth, porcelain denture teeth or custom-made porcelain teeth.
Acrylic denture teeth are the most inexpensive, followed by porcelain denture teeth.
Custom-made teeth are more expensive as these are handcrafted individually by a ceramist and can take weeks to handcraft to perfection.
Most patients opt for acrylic teeth and today materials are so good these can look very natural. Acrylic teeth also have the advantage of being easier to fix if one accidentally breaks.
How ‘natural’ will my teeth look?
The above options are beautiful given the technological advancements of today. We like to use the Phonares teeth made by Ivoclar Vivident® for their strength and beauty.
But if we were to be picky (and dentists tend to be very particular about cosmetics!) nothing surpasses the beauty of custom-made porcelain teeth handmade by a skilled ceramist.
Porcelain is still the only material that has a similar look and feel of our human teeth. You can get porcelain denture teeth but we advise they do have disadvantages of being more brittle than the plastic ones and are more likely to break. They’re also a bit noisy when speaking and chewing.
Porcelain teeth also don’t ‘glue’ to the plastic base very well and tend to pop off more easily than other options. With the high-end plastic teeth available there is little to no advantage to choosing porcelain denture teeth, it may just add unnecessary cost.
We hope you’ve found this helpful to understand all the factors that contribute to the cost of an All on 4.
To learn more about All on 4 treatment, download our ‘All on 4 guide.’ You’ll get handy checklists, information on HealthFund rebates and financing options so you can be well equipped with everything you need to know about your treatment.