Zygomatic Implants – What are They? And Why You Might be a Candidate?
Seaforth Oral Surgery is proud and excited to be offering the sophisticated procedure known as zygomatic implants, also known as All-on-4 Dental implants. Our surgeons have undertaken extensive training over the past 5 years and have developed a significant amount of experience and expertise in offering this treatment for our patients. As the dental community and patients at large are often not aware of this treatment modality, we thought we’d spend a few minutes exploring this treatment by asking ourselves a few basic questions.
What makes zygomatic implants different?
This is a dental implant technique that is exclusively used in the upper jaw (maxilla) in situations where a patient has suffered severe bone loss and would otherwise not be able to have regular or conventional implant treatment.
An additional and unique feature of this zygomatic implant treatment is the fact that the dental component (fixed denture or new teeth) must be delivered on the SAME day as the surgical installation of the implants. This results in an immediate and very appreciated functional transformation for patients.
What are zygomatic implants?
Zygomatic implants are not that different from regular dental implants. A standard implant is when incisions are made into the jaw or skull to support the implant (such as a titanium screw) that holds, say, a denture or a crown.
Where zygomatic implants differ is that the implant mechanism is longer and, instead of being anchored in the jaw or skull, is anchored in the dense bone that forms the cheekbone. It might help to visualize it, so let’s take a look at how zygomatic implants are structured.
Who should consider zygomatic implants?
Have you ever been denied a dental implant? If the reason was due to significant bone loss in the upper jaw, then zygomatic implants might be right for you. Traditional dental implants wouldn’t be suitable due to a lack of supportive bone volume, however zygomatic implants solve this problem by shifting the support of your denture to the zygomatic bones.
What makes this procedure work?
What allows this procedure to be so effective is the density of the zygomatic bone that supports the implants. This is a particularly strong bone that offers predictable and stable anchorage (or ‘osseointegration’); in layman’s terms, it shifts the ‘grunt work’ that your jaw would do to hold your implant in place to bones slightly above the jaw but just as strong.
Should you be concerned about undergoing such a new procedure?
It’s normal to approach undergoing a new procedure with caution. In reality, Dr. Antoine Chehade reminds us that “the zygomatic implant is not a new technique… it is a very elegant manner that allows for patients who are otherwise not candidates for implants because of severe bone loss to benefit from a tremendous increase in quality of life with this treatment.” The procedure has been around for 20-odd years but can only be performed by a set of specialized experts, which is why it is not commonly offered.
Should you consider a zygomatic implant?
One of the main reasons patients undergo this procedure is that they are seeking to improve their quality of life. Is your current solution preventing you from eating foods you love? With such implants you would regain significant chewing strength, not to mention improved speech.
Additionally, there is no longer a need to undergo bone grafting (which can take months to heal) before an eventual implant surgery. In this case, you can have your dentures affixed after just a few hours of treatment; restoring your smile has never been quicker.
At Seaforth Oral Surgery, we are happy to report that our first patient of the procedure reported being ‘very pleased’ with the outcome, having experienced only ‘minimal discomfort,’ and has been ‘very satisfied’ with treatment thus far. After 40 years of wearing dentures, it feels wonderful to provide her with a more permanent and easier to maintain solution.
We hope our Q & A on zygomatic implants has proved helpful in better understanding this advanced treatment now available at Seaforth Oral Surgery. If you’re interested in exploring if this treatment is right for you, don’t be shy to contact us or schedule a consultation.
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