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Mini Implants

Conventional sized dental implants need to be surrounded by a specific amount of strong, healthy bone, and they require a certain amount of space in the jawbone. Not everybody has enough space or strong enough bone for conventional dental implants but may be suitable for mini dental implants.

What Are Mini Dental Implants?

Often a mini dental implant is in one-piece, combining both the implant post and the abutment, which is the structure that protrudes above the gums, supporting the replacement prosthesis. They are far narrower in diameter than a conventional implant. Conventional dental implants have a separate post and abutment and are considerably wider.

Although mini dental implants are narrower, they still have a relatively long implant post, just like conventional implants, to provide good stability and strength. The actual post of a mini implant is different because it can be screwed straight into the gum and into the jawbone underneath.

When to Consider Mini Dental Implants?

Mini dental implants can be a good choice where space is tight, for example, when restoring lower incisors which are the much smaller, narrower lower front teeth. Often there is insufficient room to place a conventional dental implant to restore a lower front tooth successfully.

People interested in using dental implants for dentures but who are unsuitable for bone grafting or who do not wish to have this procedure might be able to have mini dental implants. While mini dental implants can be an excellent solution in specific circumstances, it’s normally necessary to place a greater number of mini implants to hold the denture securely.

It is necessary to have a good amount of bone vertically in the jawbone, which we can easily assess when we take a cone-beam CT scan. Usually, we only use mini dental implants to secure lower dentures because the bone density of the upper jaw tends to be lower and less suitable for this implant procedure.

A Shorter, Easier Procedure

When placing conventional implants, it’s necessary to make a small incision into the gum to expose the bone underneath before making a hole in the bone to place the implant successfully. We then stitch the gum closed for healing to take place.

With mini dental implants, the procedure to place them is quite different. Instead of making an incision in the gum, we insert the implant directly through the gum tissue and into the bone. The overall process is faster, and healing is quicker, and there is no need for stitches.

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