Mini Implants Milwaukee, WI
What are mini implants?
Mini-dental implants have been around for many years. They were designed to help hold on to temporary restorations in larger implant reconstructions and they have now been approved by the FDA for “long term and ongoing use” for retaining dentures and partial dentures.
Dr. Richard and Bruce Winter at Hampton Dental Associates are renowned for their work with mini-implants and Dr. Richard is an instructor that lectures on this technology. These can be used to help hold dentures or partial dentures in place more securely. Some dentists use these small diameter implants to hold on to crowns but it is only for small lower front teeth or upper lateral incisors. Full size implants have much more surface area and are always the treatment of choice for replacing single or multiple teeth! If mini-implants are being suggested to replace a molar tooth I would suggest you come in for a consultation prior to having small 1.8mm pins attempt to hold on to a larger molar which has many chewing forces associated with grinding steak and chicken and the like.
When are mini-implants useful?
When people have minimal bone left to place traditional implants or when someone is very limited financially and they would like an interim restoration while they are saving up for traditional implants. Sometimes we use minis to hold temporary restorations while underlying implants or bone grafts are healing. Mini-implants can sometimes be placed without a large surgery and often we will wait to activate the snaps on mini-implants until the implants have integrated (usually 3 months) during which time a soft liner will keep forces off of the mini-implants.
If someone wants to eliminate the acrylic in their upper denture a minimum of 6 mini-implants must be place and then we will make a metal reinforced horseshoe designed partial so you may taste your food and feel temperatures better.
In the lower arch a minimum of 4 mini implants are needed to hold a lower denture but we will always try to place 6 to insure more retention, support and chewing stability.
Why should I get mini implants?
Mini implants can be great for a patient’s self image. Now the person can eat, speak, and smile as they did before their tooth loss. The procedure is minimally invasive when compared with typical full dental implant surgery. However, similar to its full-scale counterparts, mini implants are still able to anchor dental crowns, bridges, and dentures securely in place.
What are the advantages of using mini implants?
- Mini implants can provide patients with the same benefits as conventional types of implants, but have the added advantage of being smaller. Thanks to that smaller size, mini implants can be used with patients who may not be good candidates for conventional implants.
- Because of their smaller size, mini implants do not require as much bone thickness to be able to be implanted and used to support a dental restoration.
- Additionally, mini implants are installed in a much less invasive procedure that causes less disturbance and trauma to the bone and surrounding gum tissue. Mini implants require only a small opening to be implanted into the bone, making them ideal even for elderly patients who have lost a good deal of bone mass.
- Installation of mini implants is relatively simple, requiring only one to two hours in your dentist’s office using local anesthesia.
- Healing time is short. Discomfort lasts for about 48 hours after which the patient can resume normal eating and return to work.
- Because of the smaller diameter of mini implants, they require very little bone to be taken away from the actual bone mass of the jaw. Mini implants can become sturdier than conventional implants because there is a more bone structure left to support them.
- Mini implants are threaded, not embedded, into the bone. This adds to their ability to be stable enough to support a dental restoration without compromising their long-term capacity.
- Apart from their more convenient size, the faster procedure, and the less invasive nature of mini implants, they are also significantly less expensive than conventional dental implants.
What is the procedure for installing mini implants?
- A twist drill is used to create a small pilot hole on the indicated area inside the oral cavity where the implant will be placed. Using the drill, a small hole will be made on the gingival tissue and will continue until the hole is made in the periosteum. The depth of the hole is about one third the length of the mini implant to be used.
- The mini implants will then be placed in position in the pilot hole and carefully threaded until securely set inside the dental alveolus, or the tooth socket. As the mini implant is threaded into the hole in this process, it also progressively expands the bone so that the two components are fused together tightly.
- Once the mini implants are in place, ball abutments will be attached. This is where the dental restorations will connect to the implants.
Click here to read more about this Mini-Implant patient case study.