Mini Dental Implants
Mini dental implants are a potential solution which can be used for patients who want to replace missing teeth, but are not a good candidate for a conventional restoration. In some cases, patients want to avoid the invasive surgery which is necessary for traditional implants. In other cases, the patient may not have adequate bone structure in their jaw to support the implant.
Bridges, dentures and dental implants can all be used to replace missing teeth. Dentures and bridges are false teeth which rest on top of the gum’s surface, while dental implants are surgically placed into the jawbone and cannot be removed. To begin the process, the dental professional will conduct a surgical procedure and place a titanium post or abutment into the bone of the jaw. Over the course of about three to six months, the bone will fuse around the abutment. Once the abutment fuses to the bone, the implant is revealed and a small post is attached to the implant, which serves as an anchor for attaching the artificial tooth.
Patients often prefer dental implants over traditional dentures as they are more secure and do not move or slip during routine activities. In order to be a candidate for dental implants, however, patients must have healthy and sufficient bone structure in the jaw.
Mini Dental Implants
Mini dental implants have a nearly identical structure to regular implants, however, they are slightly smaller. A mini implants contains two parts which includes a titanium post with a ball on the end, and a socket with a rubber O-ring which is used to attach the tooth to the post. Regular implants are typically about 3.4 to 5.8 mm wide, while mini implants are about 1.8 to 3.3 mm in diameter and approximately 10 to 15 mm long.
Mini implants can be used to support most types of false teeth inside the mouth. Some dental professionals recommend using mini implants for dentures, bridges and fixed crowns, while others suggest that mini implants are also suitable to securely hold lower arch dentures.
Mini Implant Options
When a patient opts to receive regular dental implants, the process requires several months and two or more appointments with the dentist. In some cases, additional visits are required for bone-grafting when additional support is needed for placing the implant posts. For other patients, they are not able to undergo the invasive surgery or commit the time required for multiple dental appointments. In some cases, the patient does not have adequate bone mass in their jaw which is required for a full-sized implant. For patients who are not candidates for regular dental implant, a mini implant may be the best backup solution. Dentists are typically able to install mini implants with just a single visit and with the use of a local anesthesia. Sutures are also not require. The new teeth and mini implants can be used the same day they are installed.
Mini Implant Care
Mini dental implants are relatively easy to care for as they require the same treatment as the natural teeth do. Good oral hygiene includes brushing at least twice each day and daily flossing. While the gums continue to heal and may be sensitive following the implant procedure, patients should use an extra soft-bristled toothbrush and sensitive toothpaste if needed.
It can be traumatic, negatively impact your confidence, and change the appearance of your smile when you lose your natural teeth. Mini dental implants are a strong and secure option for replacing missing teeth. They allow patients to speak, eat, and complete daily tasks without the concern of the false teeth slipping or coming lose. Follow up with your dentist to determine if mini implants may be a good solution for replacing missing teeth.