You’ve probably witnessed several television commercials promoting full mouth dental implants. These are the ads where you’ll see a man or woman sharing their past experiences suffering with bad teeth.
And then they make a clear choice to receive dental implants and have the most gorgeous smiles. The featured individual’s confidence is suddenly renewed, and they are proud to speak, eat and socialize in public once again. In a nutshell, this is what full mouth dental implants are all about. Everyday, this dental procedure changes people’s lives for the better.
With this in mind, it’s helpful to know that this procedure is frequently referred to by several different names. But not all full mouth procedures are exactly the same. Here we’ll share a few of those names so you know what to listen for.
We’ll also help you understand the benefits and the costs associated with each type of full mouth implant option. A detailed resource where you can find several common ways to make this dental implant procedure affordable will be offered.
Why it’s called full mouth dental implants
Here’s a very simple reason for the term full mouth dental implants: Many individuals who choose this procedure have given up on the condition of their remaining natural teeth and want to replace them all. They’ve heard all the denture horror stories and would rather not suffer through that option.
Or they may be wearing dentures — on their upper and lower jaws — and suffering, and now choose to replace them with dental implant-supported teeth. Hence, the term “full mouth dental implants.”
But this term can be a misnomer. How so? Because frequently only the upper or lower set of teeth are being replaced. Not necessarily the “full mouth.” Often times it’s just one half of the mouth, but somehow “half mouth” is not quite as catchy.
To this point, and maybe more appropriately, you’ll often hear this procedure referred to as TeethXpress® or All-on-4™ and sometimes Teeth-in-a-Day™. TeethXpress is an abbreviated term of “Teeth Express” (similarly to how we abbreviate FedEx® for Federal Express®). The term TeethXpress represents the fact that you can have a new set of dental implant-supported teeth in a jiffy!
All-on-4 means a full arch of teeth can be stabilized on as few as four dental implants or “all on four” dental implants. Figure 1 demonstrates a set of teeth that sits on four dental implants. Finally, Teeth-in-a-Day is yet another way of describing the process of receiving a new set of implant-supported teeth “in one day.”
Since TeethXpress is also frequently performed on four implants and in a few short hours, many people choose to use TeethXpress and All-on-4 interchangeably. For the purposes of this article, we’ll use TeethXpress.
What is special about the TeethXpress procedure is you can arrive at your dentist’s office at 8:30am, and by noon have a brand-new smile and a new set of teeth attached to dental implants and completely anchored in place like regular healthy teeth. Most people prefer this option since only a dentist can remove the teeth once attached to the implants.
This is different from removable partial dentures or full denture plates. Unlike dentures, full mouth dental implants don’t move around in your mouth when you talk, smile or chew.
Are there other similar dental implant options beyond TeethXpress?
Yes! While the TeethXpress procedure has become synonymous with short treatment times and transformative smiles, other types of full mouth implant procedures can be performed but may take longer to complete or require more or fewer dental implants.
For instance, a full mouth dental implant procedure — frequently referred to as full mouth crown and bridge implants — may require as many as 12 to 16 dental implants, or six to eight implants for the upper jaw and six to eight implants for the lower jaw. Given its complexity, this procedure could take as long as a year to complete and is usually more expensive than TeethXpress.
Another form of full mouth dental implants — frequently referred to as removable — may require as few as a total of four to eight implants. As seen in Figure 2, two to four implants are used in the upper jaw and/or two to four implants in the lower jaw.
Different from the TeethXpress or crown and bridge options, the removable option requires snapping a denture on and off the implants. And while this option is better than traditional dentures, it is still recommended the dentures be removed at night for cleansing.
The removable option also requires waiting three to five months before the denture can be attached to the implants. Of all the full mouth dental implant procedures, the removable option tends to be the least expensive. It is also the least desirable.
It’s always a good idea to consult with an expert implant dentist near you who is experienced in each of these options. This will help you determine which option is best for you.
How much do full mouth dental implants cost?
Unmistakably the most popular question about this procedure is “How much do full mouth dental implants cost?” We’ll do our best here to help you understand what you can expect to spend for this procedure.
Cost of the “removable” full mouth dental implant procedure
Let’s start where we left off in the previous section. The least expensive full mouth dental implant procedure is the “removable” option. This option is usually priced between $11,000 and $15,000 per jaw. The fact that this choice requires the least amount of costly materials and technique helps to bring its cost down.
Cost of the TeethXpress "fixed" dental implant procedure
The TeethXpress (or All-on-4) procedure will usually cost between $20,000 and $30,000 per upper or lower jaw. The price can vary given a few different reasons including whether premium dental implants are being used. The design of dental laboratory materials that you and your dentist choose for the teeth that are attached to the implants is another factor.
In other words, for your teeth to look very natural, certain quality standards must be met. Also, the surgical planning and execution for the TeethXpress procedure requires more of a professional coordinated effort between the surgeon, dentist and laboratory then is required with the "removable" approach. This all leads to increased pricing.
In this video, Millie, a singer, shares her reasoning for choosing the TeethXpress procedure.
Cost of the “crown and bridge” full mouth dental implant procedure
The crown and bridge procedure will usually cost between $35,000 and $38,000 per jaw. The crown and bridge option is more expensive largely for two reasons. No. 1: More dental implants are usually required, as mentioned earlier. Six to eight implants may be necessary. The crown and bridge option may also require bone grafting in areas where adequate jawbone loss has taken place.
No. 2: The second reason for the higher fee for this option has to do with the more expensive dental laboratory costs associated with this design. The crown and bridge option is usually made from porcelain or zirconia materials. These materials are more expensive than the acrylic or composite materials generally used for the TeethXpress option. Porcelain or zirconia materials also require higher levels of artistry and craftsmanship, hence, the higher cost.
Major benefits of the TeethXpress procedure and affordable resources
TeethXpress and other full mouth dental implant procedures can appear pricey at first glance. But most recipients consider them to be a long-term investment in their physical well-being and quality of life.
This procedure gives you the ability to eat virtually anything you like and to smile again with complete confidence.
Removable dentures may be far less expensive when compared to dental implants. But if dentures cause you to avoid the foods you crave most, are those dentures truly cost-effective? The Truth about Dentures page will help you understand the negative effects a denture can have on your health.
Marc, a satisfied dental implant recipient, said of his TeethXpress procedure, “I would say that it’s well worth spending the money to have it done. My nutrition is definitely better, and I’m not gulping down large chunks of food.”
Fortunately, several methods are available to make these procedures affordable. We have listed several payment plan resources that are commonly chosen to make full mouth implants affordable on our Cost of Dental Implants page.
We encourage you to learn more about your options. Most individuals who choose these procedures will plan on covering this expense over a four- to six-year period of time, similar to any other worthwhile investment.