Living with diabetes impacts several areas of your life, including your oral health. High blood sugar leads to higher levels of sugar in your saliva. Bacteria feed on sugar and the fact that high blood sugar attacks white blood cells (your main line of defence against infections) only makes the situation worse. Illness is one of the most common causes of tooth loss, and there’s a causal link between type two diabetes and missing teeth.
Living with missing or badly damaged teeth on top of your diabetes can make life even more complicated, as well as harm your confidence. If you’ve been searching for solutions to restore your smile, you may have come across the All-on-4® treatment option.
An advanced dental restoration procedure, All-on-4® works on a similar principle to standard dental implants, which involves a titanium screw inserted into the jawbone acting as an artificial root to support an individual crown. The difference with All-on-4® is that it rests an entire arch of teeth on just four implants in the upper or lower jawbone. This shortens the length of the procedure (especially the recovery time) and provides you with a new smile in just 24 hours.
If you’ve heard discouraging stories of high implant failures and extended recovery times for diabetic dental implant patients, you may wonder if All-on-4® is any different.
This is a brief guide to All-on-4® dental implants for diabetics: how the procedure differs from conventional dental implants, how to prepare for it and how to tell whether or not you’re a good candidate for All-on-4®.
Diabetes and Traditional Dental Implants
Diabetes can cause a host of dental issues, including bad breath, sore or swollen gums, loose teeth or gaps between teeth. Practising diligent dental care is important for everyone but can be especially urgent for diabetics. Diabetes, gum disease and health issues elsewhere in the body have a complex relationship. Higher glucose levels in the mouth lead to an increase in the bacteria that can cause gum disease. In turn, gum disease can make it harder to manage the symptoms of diabetes, and the combination of both is apt to increase your risk of heart disease.
As a diabetic person seeking treatment with traditional dental implants, there are a number of potential issues to be wary of and prepare for:
Due to factors such as poor blood circulation, people with diabetes often experience slower wound healing. This can increase the risk of complications and infections after surgery.
Dental implant failure
These same factors make diabetics more susceptible to implant failure than non-diabetic patients. Diabetes that’s not under proper control can slow down the integration of your new implants with your jawbone (a process called osseointegration) and raise the risk of the implants failing to take.
Bone quality and density
Diabetes raises your risk of bone fractures, with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes closely associated with lower levels of bone health.
Diabetes and periodontitis (gum disease) are closely related, and gum disease can negatively impact the dental implant healing process.
As a diabetic, you can still benefit from traditional dental implants, but you may have to accept a longer recovery period and a higher risk of dental implant failure than a non-diabetic person.
Fortunately, there are certain steps you can take to increase your chance of success. Make sure your blood sugar levels are stable and under control, keep up strong oral hygiene practices, avoid smoking and eat a healthy, balanced diet.
So how do All-on-4® dental implants for diabetics compare? As a diabetic seeking treatment, how do you know if you’re suitable for All-on-4®?
Diabetes and All-on-4® Dental Implants
All-on-4® is a procedure with a 98% success rate. A treatment that has helped hundreds of thousands of patients gain new smiles and renewed confidence, All-on-4® has several unique benefits, including some that are especially useful for diabetic patients. Advantages of All-on-4® dental implants for diabetics include:
Fewer dental implants
Because All-on-4® involves resting an arch of teeth on just four dental implants, there are fewer wounds in the mouth to heal. This means fewer potential complications to deal with.
No bone grafting required
Diabetes affects bone density. But while traditional dental implants can require dental bone grafting to ensure their success for diabetic patients, All-on-4® implants are strategically placed in only the strongest areas of the jawbone. This means you can be a good candidate for All-on-4® even if you have a weakened jawbone.
Shorter recovery time
Due to fewer incisions having to be made in the gums plus no bone grafting, All-on-4® has a shorter recovery time than standard dental implants. This means even if your diabetes leads to delayed healing, All-on-4® allows less time than traditional dental implants for infections and other complications to settle in.
Are You Suitable for All-on-4®?
All-on-4® is designed for patients who are missing all or most of their teeth, not those who are missing one or two. Clients who are suitable for All-on-4® don’t necessarily need to have an entire mouthful or arch of missing teeth, but they definitely have multiple teeth that need replacing. Good candidates for All-on-4® can include:
- People with all or nearly all of their teeth due to a factor such as injury, illness, trauma or a genetic condition.
- People who have advanced-stage gum disease.
- People who can’t have their teeth restored through other treatment options or don’t see any benefits in doing so.
- People who are living with ill-fitting dentures.
The most reliable way to find out whether or not you’re suitable for All-on-4® is to book a personal consultation with Next Smile Australia. Our skilled team will consider your dental and medical history, including your history with diabetes, to assess whether or not All-on-4® is the right option for you and create a treatment plan.
The Next Smile Australia team has in-depth knowledge of the benefits All-on-4® dental implants can have for diabetics and how to tailor our treatment plans to patients with diabetes.
Book a Consultation with Next Smile Australia
Whether you’re ready to step into the world with a brand new smile or you just want to find out more about the benefits of All-on-4® dental implants for diabetics, the Next Smile Australia team is ready to assist you.
The journey of your All-on-4® treatment always begins with a consultation with a member of the Next Smile Australia team, in which we discuss your suitability for All-on-4®. If you’re eligible, we’ll take scans of your jawbone and digital impressions in order to create a set of teeth tailored for you.
Our team are as professional as we are empathetic, with treatment carried out in a calm and relaxing environment at one of our medically regulated Super Clinics, filled with the latest technology.
To find out more about All-on-4® dental implants for diabetics and to book a personal consultation to see if you’re a good candidate for All-on-4® , contact the Next Smile Australia team.