If you’ve investigated using dental implant treatment to replace missing teeth you may have come across mini dental implants. There are a lot more traditional implants as well. There are so many different implant treatments available today that it can be confusing working out.

Trying to decide if one treatment might be more suitable for you than another can be a hard choice.

The only way to know for sure is to see a good dental implant dentist. It can be nice to know a bit about the treatments available and especially about mini dental implants and if they could help you.

What Are Mini Dental Implants?
Mini dental implants are significantly different from traditional dental implants. Instead of being a two-piece design consisting of a separate implant post and abutment, mini dental implants come in just a single solid piece.

The actual implant is much narrower in diameter and the part of the implant that is inserted into your jawbone is a screw rather than a post. Mini dental implants are made from the same materials as standard sized dental implants that are made of high quality, medical grade titanium alloy.

They are used in very specific circumstances. Other names for these types of implants include small diameter implants or SDIs and narrow body implants. A mini dental implant gets its strength from the length of the implant screw that is inserted into your jawbone. It may be anywhere from 10 mm to 18 mm in length.

The actual diameter of a mini dental implant can be anywhere from 1.8 mm to 2.9 mm. This is significantly narrower than conventional implants that are at least 3-4 mm in diameter.

When Should Mini Dental Implants Be Used?
Mini dental implants are excellent for certain situations and one good use is for replacing lower incisors. These teeth are naturally much smaller and narrower than the rest of the teeth in the jawbone. Often there is insufficient space to use a traditionally sized implant. Using an implant with a narrower body can help make this treatment possible.

Often mini dental implants are used to hold dentures in place. This treatment can be very beneficial for people suffering from loose and uncomfortable dentures. Usually, its lower dentures that create the most problems because of jawbone loss. A lower denture relies solely on the bony ridge that used to support the teeth for support and retention.

Over the years, jawbone loss significantly reduces this retention, resulting in a denture that will often move around or slip out of place during eating and speaking.

Mini dental implants represent an affordable solution for this problem. They are cheaper than traditional implants due to their smaller size and the procedure used to insert them into the jawbone. Using mini dental implants can also be good where jawbone loss has already occurred and there is insufficient bone to safely place traditional sized implants.

Traditional implants need to be surrounded by several millimeters of strong and healthy bone. This is because they must bond with this bone to create a strong and stable post to support replacement teeth.

Where insufficient bone is available, often it’s necessary to have a bone graft which increases the cost of treatment and the time required. Mini dental implants are a neat way to get around this problem.

They are particularly good for anybody who doesn’t wish to have a bone graft or who is unable to undergo this procedure. The procedure to place mini dental implants is somewhat different compared to conventional-sized implants.

With conventional sized implants a dentist must make an incision into the gum tissue to expose the jawbone underneath. Next, they will drill into the bone creating a hole in which to insert the implant post.

The gum tissue is then stitched up and sometimes the implant post may be hidden underneath the gum tissue. A healing cap can be placed on top of the implant and will just protrude above the gum while the post heals with the surrounding bone.

What Kind of Surgery Is Needed to Place Mini Dental Implants?
The surgery required to insert mini dental implants is less invasive and quicker than the surgery needed to place traditional sized implants. This is because the implant post is inserted directly through the gum tissue. There is no need for the oral surgeon to make an incision into the gum. Healing is faster and more comfortable and there is no need for stitches.

There’s also less likely to be any other side effects such as swelling. Sometimes with mini dental implant treatment, it’s possible to “load” the implants soon after surgery.

This isn’t always the case but your implant dentist can talk to you about this possibility. When it is possible, it means a new set of teeth can be attached to your dental implants just a few hours after surgery is completed.

If your current denture is still in reasonable condition, it’s sometimes possible to adapt this to fit onto the dental implants. Being left without teeth for any length of time is a major concern for many people. It’s something you shouldn’t be concerned about. A decent dental implant dentist will make sure you have at least a provisional set of teeth or a provisional tooth soon after surgery is completed.

You need not worry you will be left without a smile or the ability to eat. Mini dental implant treatment is planned in exactly the same way as conventional dental implant treatment. If you are interested in this procedure, your implant dentist will need to take a CT scan and x-rays to decide if treatment is right for you. If it is, they will preplan treatment using computer guided surgery.

This is a sophisticated process using the computerized information from a CT scan to precisely pinpoint the exact position of each dental implant.

The next stage is for a surgical stent to be made based on this computerized plan. A surgical stent will fit onto your gums and will guide your dental implant dentist during surgery. Thus, ensuring the implant placement doesn’t deviate from their plan.

This type of precise planning does require a bit of extra time. It’s all carried out behind-the-scenes so that when you turn up for your implant surgery, it should be smoother and quicker and more comfortable.

Author's Bio: 

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