How do Mini-dental Implants Work?

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Mini-dental implants share many characteristics with their larger counterparts, standard dental implants, however there are a number of distinctive advantages conferred to them by their size.

Like standard dental implants the mini version works by providing a firm base to which prostheses like dentures can be fixed. Mini implants are surgically placed under into sockets in the jawbone, where they can be left to fuse with the bone to form a tightly integrated structure that can anchor artificial teeth.

The point of this exercise is to create an artificial base similar to that found beneath our natural teeth. The roots that lie beneath our biological teeth anchor them to the jawbone, distributing the forces a tooth must encounter on a day to day basis through chewing and biting down and through the jawbone. The size and density of the jawbone means that it can absorb these forces, and the fact that it is there to stabilise our teeth preserves them in the long run and prevents excessive wear and tear. It is this remarkable system which is in fact responsible for the robustness of our teeth, which can, with proper care, last as long as a lifetime.

So when artificial teeth are fixed to a set of implants or mini-dental implants, any forces they experience are shared with the jawbone beneath, providing a base of stability that can confer the longevity and security our natural roots offer our teeth. In doing so, mini-dental implants also improve the comfort and usability of dentures, as well as their durability.

Mini-dental implants are made out of titanium alloys which are robust and lightweight, and fuse readily with the jawbone when necessary. These implants are engineered and placed at intervals along a jawbone where necessary to provide artificial teeth with the support they need. If a single crown needs to be supported, then a single implant can be placed into the jaw. However if as many as a full arch of teeth are needed, then the procedure can be used to put in a set of implants which can effectively support them.

Because of their size mini-implants can be used on a range of patients who would not otherwise be able to benefit from the standard dental implant procedure. Despite this, and their dramatically reduced costs, mini-dental implants are known to be extremely robust and enduring, and can offer a huge improvement in the function of a set of implants.

What do Mini-dental Implants do?

Mini-dental implants are an invaluable provision for people with missing teeth, particularly those who fall under a few categories that make them unsuitable for standard, full sized dental implants.

Mini-dental implants are designed to be smaller than their counterparts, with diameters below 3mm compared as about 4-5mm for the average fully sized dental implant. This smaller size confers a number of benefits, most notably a need for smaller amounts of jawbone and a less invasive surgical procedure. These requirements make the procedure more suited to people who have lost jawbone or who suffer from medical conditions that would make a full-blown surgical procedure too risky.

In this article we look at what it is that mini-dental implants hope to achieve once within the mouth.

The function of mini-dental implants

Also referred to as MIDs, mini-dental implants are becoming increasingly popular thanks to their size, effectiveness, and reduced costs. MIDs have a number of important roles that can hugely benefit people suffering from missing teeth. The first of these is the stabilisation of artificial teeth.

Dental prosthetics like dentures and bridges have come a long way since their first uses so many years ago. However there are still a number of limitations that are inherent to their design and the fact that they stand alone in the mouth, while biological teeth share the support of the jawbone. MIDs aim to remedy this disparity, acting as artificial roots that provide dental prosthetics with the support and backing of the dense and robust jawbone.

Each MID is surgically placed beneath the gum and into the jawbone, where the implants are left to fuse with the jawbone. Once fully integrated into the bone, these structures can distribute the forces experienced by prosthetic teeth down into the stable jawbone in a manner virtually identical to the mechanism found underlying natural teeth.

This stabilising function of mini-dental implants is their basic and fundamental role, and they do this with remarkable success despite their diminutive dimensions! The result of this stability is improved functionality and comfort. People with MIDs will be able to eat a broader range of foods, including chewier ones which would normally be unsuited to standard dental implants.

MIDs also have an important role in maintaining the jawbone, which can suffer dramatic changes once teeth have been lost. Our jawbones are actually extremely dynamic structures which rely on constant stimulation through regular use of our teeth to remain intact and healthy. Once this stimulation is lost, for example as a result of missing teeth, the body takes this as a sign that the jawbone is no longer needed in the way it once was, triggering a process which harvests bone from the jaw and leaves it diminished.

This is actually a category which leaves many people unsuitable for the standard implant procedure. Fortunately the reduced size of MIDs means that they can be used in these instances, and because they act as a link between artificial teeth in the jawbone, they restore the stimulus needed for the maintenance of healthy jawbone. Ultimately the application of MIDs can achieve a restoration of the jawbone and improved all around oral stability and health.

Stability, comfort, durability, and functionality are essentially what mini-dental implants achieve through the means discussed thus far in this article. The success of MIDs has become widespread their invention, and the fact that on top of their many other benefits they usually cost about half as much as standard dental implants is a definite added bonus.

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