What is the Difference Between All on 4 and Dentures?

Both All on 4 and dentures serve the purpose of replacing missing teeth, but their methods and results are not identical. While dentures offer a removable solution that requires daily maintenance, All on 4 implants provide a more permanent fix, firmly lodged in the jaw for improved eating and speaking. Yet, it’s not as simple as pick-and-choose; individual needs, budget constraints, and insurance aspects play critical roles too in determining the optimal choice.

Both All on 4 dental implants and dentures are designed to improve the functionality and aesthetics of your smile by restoring missing teeth, providing viable options for regaining oral function, and ensuring that you can eat, talk, and smile with confidence.

Dentures, also known as false teeth, are removable prosthetic devices constructed to fit directly over the gums. They can replace an entire arch of teeth or just a few missing teeth. Some designs utilise metal clasps or dental adhesive for stabilisation, while others rely on suction or implant posts for attachment.

On the other hand, All on 4 dental implants are a full-mouth restoration solution that offers a fixed set of replacement teeth supported by four dental implants. These implants are surgically placed into the jawbone to serve as anchors to which a denture-like prosthesis is attached. The result is a stable and natural-looking set of teeth that function similarly to natural teeth.

The contrasting design of these solutions greatly impacts their application and effectiveness in restoring oral health and function. It is important to consider several factors when choosing between them in order to make an informed decision regarding oral health.

Both options aim to address tooth loss – a common concern influencing not only our physical appearance but our overall well-being. Having the ability to regain natural oral function is particularly crucial for maintaining a good quality of life. Therefore, having a comprehensive understanding of how these restorative solutions work is vital in determining the best option suited for individual needs.

Dentures Explained

Dentures are artificial replacements for missing teeth that can be removed and reinserted into your mouth. They are a well-established option for those with multiple missing teeth. Here’s a look at the different types of dentures available to patients seeking full mouth restoration.

Types of Dentures

When it comes to dentures, there are several types, each serving different needs and preferences. Let’s take a closer look at some of these:

  1. Full Dentures: Used when all teeth are missing, either in the upper jaw or lower jaw, or both. These rest on the gums.
  2. Partial Dentures: Unlike full dentures, partial dentures are used when only a few teeth are missing. They consist of replacement teeth attached to a base made from coloured plastic material.
  3. Conventional Dentures: Fully removable and fitted after any remaining teeth have been removed and tissues have healed completely.
  4. Implant-Supported Dentures: Involve having dental implants placed into the jawbone, providing a secure foundation for the denture.

Each type is designed to cater to specific needs, offering varying levels of support and stability based on individual oral health conditions and requirements. The materials used for these prosthetics generally include acrylics, resins, or metal components based on the preferred custom design by the dental professional.

The fitting process for conventional dentures involves taking detailed impressions or moulds of the patient’s mouth to ensure a snug fit, providing optimal comfort and function. Additionally, as part of the maintenance routine, regular cleaning helps prevent issues such as plaque buildup and staining.

Implant-supported dentures offer increased stability due to their attachment to implants surgically placed in the jawbone. This type provides a strong and permanent solution for tooth loss, promoting optimal oral health while enhancing overall functionality.

The All on 4 Procedure

The All on 4 dental implant procedure involves several main stages, all aimed at providing a solid, long-lasting solution for full mouth restoration. The process begins with a surgical phase where implants are placed into the jawbone to serve as anchors for a custom-made set of prosthetic teeth. Let’s explore each step in detail.

Surgical Process

The surgical process is a critical initial phase of the All on 4 procedure. Patients may receive local anaesthesia, sedation, or general anaesthesia to ensure comfort during the surgery. A meticulous and detailed examination is performed to determine the optimal locations for implant placement. Once the positions are planned and finalised, the implants are surgically inserted into the jawbone.

An important aspect of this phase is that it can often be completed in a single day, meaning that patients can leave with a fully functional set of teeth after just one appointment. The duration of the procedure may vary from patient to patient based on individual needs and any additional treatments required alongside the placement of the implants.


Following the implant placement, the process of osseointegration begins. This is where the implants fuse directly with the natural bone, creating a solid foundation for the attached prosthetic teeth. Osseointegration is essential for ensuring stability and strength for long-term results. It typically takes several months for this integration to occur fully, allowing time for the jawbone to heal and bond with the implants.

Close monitoring and regular follow-up appointments with your dental professional will aid in assessing the progress of osseointegration and ensuring that there are no complications in this critical stage.

Prosthetic Attachment

After osseointegration has taken place, the prosthetic teeth are securely attached to the implanted fixtures. Digital imaging and modelling play a key role in customising the restoration to fit precisely with each patient’s unique dental structure. This ensures a natural look and comfortable fit as well as optimal functionality.

Just like finalising a puzzle, this last step brings everything together—creating a beautiful and functional smile that significantly enhances both appearance and confidence. The result? A complete restoration that mimics natural teeth in terms of look, feel, and function.

By understanding these details of the All on 4 dental implant procedure, individuals seeking full mouth restoration can be well-informed about what to expect throughout their treatment journey.

Comparing All on 4 and Dentures

When it comes to full mouth restoration, both All on 4 dental implants and traditional dentures are popular choices. However, there are several key factors to consider when deciding between the two options. Let’s explore these differences to help you make an informed decision.

Stability and Function

One of the most important considerations is stability and functionality. Speech and eating, two essential daily functions, can be significantly affected by your choice. With All on 4, the implants are surgically embedded into the jawbone, providing a secure fit and natural feel. This integration makes activities like eating and speaking more comfortable. On the other hand, traditional dentures may pose issues of potential movement, particularly during chewing or speaking, leading to discomfort and insecurity.

The integration with the jawbone not only provides greater stability but also helps maintain a natural facial structure by preventing bone loss.

Longevity and Durability

In terms of longevity, All on 4 implants have an advantage. When properly cared for, All on 4 implants can last a lifetime, making them a long-term investment in your oral health. This is due to their sturdy construction, which integrates with the jawbone similar to natural teeth. In contrast, dentures may require replacement every 5-10 years due to wear and tear.

The durability of All on 4 implants provides peace of mind, as they offer a reliable long-term solution for full mouth restoration.


Aesthetic concerns are another crucial aspect to consider. The appearance and natural look of both options can significantly impact one’s confidence and comfort. All on 4 implants resemble natural teeth closely in terms of both look and feel, offering a seamless blend with the rest of your teeth. This delivers a more natural smile that boosts self-confidence. Conversely, traditional dentures might appear more artificial, which could affect your level of comfort in social situations.

As we’ve explored the stability, durability, and aesthetic benefits of both All on 4 and dentures, it becomes evident that each option presents unique advantages. A comprehensive evaluation considering personal preferences and individual circumstances is crucial in determining the most suitable option for full mouth restoration.

Now that we’ve dissected the differences between All on 4 dental implants and traditional dentures, it’s time to examine how to maintain and care for these restorative options to keep your oral health in top condition.

Maintenance and Care for All on 4 and Dentures

Taking care of your full mouth restoration is crucial for its long-term success. Whether you opt for All on 4 implants or traditional dentures, understanding the proper way to maintain and care for them is essential for keeping your oral health and functionality in top condition.

Brushing and Cleaning Routines

It’s important to maintain good oral hygiene practises, regardless of whether you have All on 4 implants or dentures. For All on 4 implants, a soft-bristled toothbrush is typically recommended, along with using an antimicrobial mouth rinse. Regular flossing around the implants and bridge work is also important to keep the area clean and free from debris. Similarly, denture wearers should use a soft-bristled brush and non-abrasive toothpaste to clean their dentures daily to prevent plaque buildup.

Dietary Considerations

When it comes to diet, there are some considerations to keep in mind with both All on 4 implants and dentures. For All on 4 patients, it’s important to avoid hard or sticky foods that could damage the prosthetic teeth or put undue stress on the implants. On the other hand, denture wearers should be cautious about eating certain foods that could dislodge or damage their dentures. Both options may require dietary changes initially, but these can often be overcome with time as you get used to your new restoration.

For example, with All on 4 implants, it might be best to steer clear of crunchy foods like popcorn or hard sweets that could potentially harm the prosthesis or dislodge one of the hybrid bridge’s screws. Whereas for someone wearing dentures, softer foods might be recommended during the early transitional period.

Regular Dental Check-ups

Both All on 4 implants and dentures require regular visits to your dentist. For All on 4 patients, these check-ups often involve inspections of the implants and prosthetic teeth, ensuring everything is stable and functioning correctly. Denture wearers will need periodic evaluations to ensure a proper fit as bone levels change over time. In both cases, these visits provide an opportunity for any minor adjustments that might be necessary to improve comfort and function.

By following these recommended maintenance and care tips for All on 4 implants or dentures, you can contribute to ensuring their longevity and functionality. Taking care of your oral health in conjunction with regular check-ups is vital in preserving your investment in full mouth restoration.

Cost and Insurance Factors of All on 4 and Dentures

Choosing between All on 4 dental implants and traditional dentures involves more than just clinical aspects; it’s also a significant financial decision that can profoundly impact your oral health comfort in the long run. Let’s delve into the cost elements of each treatment, as well as the typical insurance coverage provided.

When considering the cost breakdown, we need to recognise that All on 4 dental implants typically have a higher initial expense compared to traditional dentures. The reason for this lies in the advanced technology involved in the implant procedure. With the cost of All-on-4, precise surgical placement allows a full set of teeth to be supported by just four implants, enhancing stability and long-term functionality but impacting overall costs due to the detailed nature of the procedure.

Similarly, while traditional dentures have lower initial costs compared to All on 4, they entail recurring expenses such as regular adjustments, replacements due to changes in bone structure, wear and tear, and potential damage. These long-term costs must be factored into your financial considerations when evaluating your options.

Now, let’s discuss additional procedures that may impact the cost. For All-on-4 dental implants, auxiliary procedures such as bone grafting, sinus lifts, or extractions may be needed depending on the patient’s individual situation, contributing to increased overall costs for some patients.

In contrast, while traditional dentures don’t usually require auxiliary surgeries before placement, they may necessitate follow-up treatments such as realignments or rebasing over time, resulting in incremental expenditures.

When it comes to long-term maintenance, both options have distinct requirements. All-on-4 implants are designed for durability and have lower maintenance costs over time compared to traditional dentures. This means that while All-on-4 may have higher upfront costs, its long-term maintenance costs are generally lower.

Furthermore, insurance coverage plays a pivotal role in determining suitable dental restoration options that align with your budget and preferences.

Dental insurance differs when it comes to covering All-on-4 dental implants versus traditional dentures. While many plans may cover traditional dentures as a necessary prosthetic service, coverage for All-on-4 dental implants is less standardised due to being a newer treatment approach with distinctive features. It is crucial for patients considering either option to review their insurance plans thoroughly before making a final decision.

Seeking clarification on these aspects can aid in informed decision-making regarding choosing between All-on-4 and traditional dentures based on individual budget constraints and personalised needs.

Making an educated decision about full mouth restoration involves understanding not just the clinical aspects but also the financial considerations including insurance coverage. If you are interested in discussing the All on 4 treatment with our dentist, you can book a free implant consultation online or call us at our dental clinic in Kirrawee on (02) 8544 8607.