What are Mini Dental Implants?
A dental implant is a small titanium post that replaces the root of a lost tooth. MDIs, or Mini Dental Implants, are smaller and thinner than other types of implants, but perform the same function. They can be used to support a single replacement tooth, or as part of the support system for a full denture.
When used to support a denture, the MDI has an attachment that is inserted into the base of the prosthetic. The implant head is shaped like a sphere to easily fit into the attachment, which has a rubber O-ring, resembling a socket. When the denture is seated, the O-ring can snap over the ball and will hold it firmly in place. Mini implants allow for secure mobility while preventing your denture from lifting.
What is the history of Mini Dental Implants?
Mini Dental Implants were first introduced to the dental field during a conference in Orlando, Florida in April of 1999. Since then this innovative system has become a popular procedure, enhancing the dental health of thousands of individuals.
Is the Mini Dental Implant FDA approved?
Yes. The FDA granted formal approval for the use of MDI procedures following extensive clinical and technical research. This means that the system is safe for public use and is beneficial in promoting dental health. The Mini Dental Implant device not only received approval as a transitional dental product, but more importantly as a long-term solution.
When can Mini Dental Implants be used?
Many patients with missing teeth don't have enough bone for traditional implants, but they have enough for Mini Dental Implants. The MDI procedure can be used for support purposes or where solid bony adaption has occurred. In these situations, mini implants can be used as a long term supporting structures. Some patients have successfully had MDIs for several decades. More recently, dental professionals have been using MDIs to support crowns and bridges and for single tooth replacements. Consult with Dr. Brown to see if you have sufficient bone levels and are a good candidate for Mini Dental Implants.
What is the primary use of Mini Dental Implants?
Approximately 50 million people in the United States struggle daily with dentures. Many deal with the pain associated with ill-fitting dentures and the thick layers of adhesive required to keep them in place. Many find themselves withdrawing from social situations and other life events due to the embarrassment and pain associated with wearing dentures. In addition, countless denture wearers suffer from bad breath due to trapped and decaying food in their dentures. With that in mind, the most functional use of MDIs is stabilization of a lower denture.
The successful placement of Mini Dental Implants can resolve the practical and social problems associated with wearing dentures. Since 1999, denture patients from around the world have experienced relief from loose or badly fitted dentures by getting Mini Dental Implants. MDIs can stabilize a denture in just a couple of hours with the patient leaving our office already feeling the functional effect of a secure denture.
How specifically can Mini Dental Implants help denture wearers?
The MDI procedure results in a fully reliable, tight, but comfortable fitting system that keeps the denture firmly in place. This enables the patient to speak and eat with confidence. Following the procedure, patients can remove and replace their denture easily after a little practice, allowing a better chance of good dental hygiene.
How are Mini Dental Implants inserted and what can I expect right after the procedure?
The standard protocol for MDIs involves four implants being gently inserted into the front of the patient’s lower jaw under mild anesthesia. The Mini Dental Implants are about the size of wooden toothpicks and are positioned five millimeters apart in the lower jaw. The full procedure takes approximately one hour. Dr. Brown then adjusts the patient’s denture to allow it to simply snap onto the mini implants. Because inserting MDIs is a minimally invasive procedure involving a small area, the typical patient can enjoy a light meal an hour or so after having the implants placed.
The human jaw endures tremendous forces while chewing food. How can these tiny Mini Dental Implants withstand that?
Our jaws are built to withstand pressure, but professionals have been struggling for centuries to create an implant that can fully withstand those forces. About twenty-five years ago, doctors began experimenting with titanium for use in dentistry. Titanium is an exceptionally resilient metal, and has proved to be completely biocompatible, making it a perfect choice for implants.
The IMTEC Mini Dental Implants takes that industry knowledge to the next level by adapting an approved alloy of titanium. The result is the strongest metal on earth, 64% stronger than implants constructed of commercially pure titanium. What this means is that if a denture patient has adequate bone mass to place a miniature implant, it will withstand ordinary chewing forces just like natural teeth. While fractures can occur as with natural teeth, they are rare.
How long are Mini Dental Implants?
Mini Dental Implants come in four lengths from IMTEC Corporation manufacturers: 10, 13, 15 and 18 millimeters. These lengths match the depths that are required in a wide range of prospective Mini Dental Implant patients. Dr. Brown will choose the length that fits your jaw so that you can enjoy all the benefits of dental implants for years to come.