Mini dental implants: When and how are they used?

24/02/2020 0
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Mini dental implants are the ideal choice when looking replacement of the incisors or small teeth, but are most often used in fixing dentures in the elderly.

DIFFERENT FROM THE CLASSIC IMPLANT

As the name suggests, a mini dental implant (figure B) is the miniature version of the classic dental implant (figure A).


Classic implant vs mini dental implant

SIZE

The main difference between the two types of implants is given by their size. Thus, a mini implant cannot exceed 3mm in diameter, while a classic implant is more robust, being able to reach even at 4.75mm thickness.

COMPONENTS

The second difference between the 2 types of implants is given by their construction. While classic implants are made up of two components (screw and blunt), mini implants are made of a single compact, non-removable piece.

DEGREE OF INVASIVITY

The third difference is given by the degree of invasiveness. While classic implant surgery requires additional precautions when assessing health, mini implants have a low degree of invasiveness, so they can be applied even to people with various more serious conditions.


PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS IN FIXING PROSTHESES

Implant stabilization implants have become extremely popular in recent years. As you've probably heard, patients with mobile prostheses have a lot of problems.

    • Any mobile prosthesis can move when you eat, when you smile or when the world is dearer to you. This makes the wearer ashamed if he has been noticed and has negative psychological consequences.
    • Another problem that occurs when you have a prosthesis is bone resorption. In the last 15 years, many studies have been done that have shown that patients wearing prostheses resorb the bone on which it is fixed. This is because the bone "knows" that it has lost natural teeth and that there are no more roots. At the same time, patients who mounted a fixed prosthesis on implants does not develop this condition because the bone "believes" that the implant is its root.

In response to the above problems, the solution for stabilizing prostheses and maintaining the health of the maxillary bone are implants. However, many cannot resort to classic implants for various reasons, explained below.

LACK OF BONE VOLUME

Lack of bone volume is not a problem for patients who have recently fixed a prosthesis, but in the case of those who have been wearing prostheses for a long time, bone resorption is installed. This means that the implants can no longer be inserted because they no longer have enough bone tissue to anchor. However, there are 2 solutions to this problem:

  1. Bone addition or augmentation
  2. Pyramidion implants (no bone addition required)

COST AND DURATION OF BONE INCREASE

The problem of bone resorption can be solved by augmentation or bone addition, but this is an expensive procedure and not many can afford it. Moreover, augmentation involves a long waiting time that can extend up to 12 months.

HEALTH PROBLEMS

The insertion of classic implants requires time and good health. In the case of elderly patients, health problems are common and the insertion of classic implants can be a rather problematic operation, both in terms of healing time and invasiveness of the procedure. Patients in poor health are not the best candidates for this type of surgery.

MINI-IMPLANT: THE ALTERNBATIVE SOLUTION TO THE CLASSIC IMPLANT

Due to the ergonomic features, mini implants (along with Pyramidion implants) are the alternative and ideal solution for classic implants. Their choice is necessary especially when the bone is very thin, in the situation when the lower incisors are replaced - mandibular or in orthodontic treatments.

TYPES

If we talk about the shape, there are 2 types of mini dental implants:

  • with prosthetic abutment
  • with the ball for attaching the prosthesis

BENEFITS

Mini implants have a number of advantages, including the following:

  • The procedure for inserting mini dental implants is minimally invasive
  • Mini-implants can be inserted extremely quickly
  • The healing time is very short
  • Lower risks than in the case of classic implants
  • The price of a mini-implant is lower than that of the classic implant
  • Patients with a lack of bone volume should not have a bone addition

SURGERY

The insertion of a single mini implant lasts approximately 7 minutes and is performed immediately after the anesthesia. Although the same anesthesia is used as in any other dental operation, the way of inserting the mini-implants is very different from the operation with classic implants.

While standard implants can be inserted at various angles, perpendicular or oblique to the bone, mini-implants can only be inserted in one way.

INSERTION IN THE CASE OF MOBILE PROSTHESIS

Due to the fact that mini-implants are most often used to fix mobile prostheses, they must be inserted in a parallel way to each other. Otherwise, you would not be able to remove the prosthesis easily. Because of this, mini-implants are usually inserted in the area between the incisors or in other areas that allow this placement.

In the picture below you can see the insertion areas of the mini implants in the mandible (A) and jaw (B).


Insertion of mini-implants for mobile prosthesis

RISKS

Theoretically, but also practically, the insertion of mini-dental implants presents less risks than the classic implants. In order to eliminate the risks, it is recommended that both the doctor and the patient pay attention to certain aspects.

In the case of the doctor, it must:

  • wax and check all tests of the patient to decide if he qualifies for surgery.
  • correctly evaluate the dental x-ray to determine the exact location of the future mini-implant.
  • have experience in implantology and mini-implants.

In the case of the patient, it must:

  • maintain good oral hygiene to prevent plaque.
  • follow the instructions and medication before and after surgery.
  • eliminate or reduce the number of cigarettes if you are a smoker.

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