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A New Foundation


Tired of repeated visits to the dentist because another tooth fractured? Never happy with your bite and frustrated just thinking of floss? It may be time to think BIG – starting with a new foundation!

Sometimes it is not only more wise, but also more cost-effective to remove all remaining teeth and rebuild everything from scratch. To some it may sound extreme and yes, it is a very effective treatment protocol reserved only for select cases. The major aim of this treatment is to eliminate infection and reduce future risks associated with periodontal disease. The second aim is to restore function in such a manner that the teeth, the joints and the musculature are in harmony after treatment.

The pictures below are before and after images from a typical All-on-Four Rehabilitation. Besides the glaring obvious improvement of the smile and teeth, you may also notice a huge change in the upright (vertical) dimension of the patient’s face. This restoration of vertical height is a big deal in any restorative case as it puts the joints and muscles in better relation. This alone resolves many of the commonly associated symptoms such as headaches, earaches and muscle spasms. These symptoms may range from a mild intensity to complete debilitation.

What to expect

First Appointment

The first appointment is always the most important as it is where we assess your needs and listen to your aspirations. Dr van Niekerk and his team will collect all the necessary diagnostic materials to formulate a complete treatment schedule. Because this treatment takes so many different variables into account, each case is unique and they vary significantly in structure, duration and complexity.

Subsequent Appointments

The following appointments will be planned with your schedule and needs in mind. We are able to deliver a quality product within 6 weeks (start to finish), but would advise a longer treatment time of 3 to 6 months where possible. The extended treatment time allows your body to adapt to the dimensions of your new prosthesis, which equates to improved accuracy and fit of the final product. The first phase of treatment focuses on removal of unhealthy elements and elimination of infection. The second phase of treatment aims to restore the foundation by using Straumann implants and may be combined with phase one to reduce downtime. Both these phases involve surgery, which may be done under general or local anaesthesia. Our preferred solution is chair-side conscious sedation by an anaesthetist. This allows us the comfort of our working in our own rooms while you enjoy a peaceful slumber under the watchful eye of our anaesthetist.  Phase three aims to restore function.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will I go without teeth for a while?

No, there are many different ways to get you a new smile, but none involve you without teeth. Your temporary teeth may be either removable or fixed depending on the case. They not only act as intermediate teeth, but allow us to make unlimited adjustments as we move towards your final new smile.

How will I clean my teeth after the procedure?

There are many tools which may be used alongside your usual toothbrush that will make cleaning easier. Our favourite is a waterflosser paired with a good quality Chlorhexidine mouthrinse. We also advise regular visits to our Oral hygienist to keep your prosthesis polished. She may also pick up on any irregularities around the prosthesis which will allow early intervention and quick resolution.

How durable are the prosthetic teeth?

There are generally two types of materials in use today. Both options are available and each offer its own unique pro’s and con’s. The ceramic teeth are by nature far more durable than acrylic teeth. Acrylic teeth are inexpensive and easily replaced. On average they should be replaced after 5-10 years depending on their use.

For more information about All-on-Four Rehabilitation in Umhlanga, or to schedule a consultation, contact The Cosmetic and Dental Emporium Umhlanga at 031 566 5121.

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