Mini-Implants Are Different: Learn How

Dental implant surgery has brought natural and easy-care solutions for missing teeth to millions. Now, mini-implants have allowed patients a considerably shortened implant process. Mini-implants bring full-sized satisfaction to dental patients but the way they differ from traditional implants is worth noting. To learn more about how mini-implants are different, read on.

Traditional Implants Take Longer

Before mini-implants were invented, patients had to wait up to a month for their gums to calm down after the first surgery. Small titanium posts were inserted into the gums, and then the patient had to wait for them to bond with the jawbones underneath the gums. Once a few weeks have passed, the patient was able to have the top part of the implant placed. The top part, which is the visible crown area of the tooth, is attached to the titanium post.

Mini-Implants Take Less Time

With mini-implants, the patient can have the posts inserted along with crowns all in one sitting. What makes mini-implants so different is that the posts are even smaller than the traditional implant posts. That means they don't have to bond with the jawbone right away, and they tend to cause less inflammation due to their shortened size. Usually, the dentist can insert the posts without having to use sutures (stitches) because the mini-implants have smaller posts that leave a smaller wound to deal with.

Mini-Implants and Bone Loss

Some dental patients unable to have traditional implants because of bone loss in the jaw area may qualify for a mini-implant. The shorter post lessens the importance of bonding to the jawbone immediately. In time, however, your mini-implant will also form a strong bond with your jawbones and become secure and stable.

Special Care for Mini-Implants

It can take more time for your mini-implants to become strong, however. The trade-off with a mini-implant is that you need be more careful with your habits after implantation. Traditional implants call for you to pay attention to your eating and chewing habits afterward but the need for care is increased with a mini-implant.

  1. Pain after the first day or so and any signs of fever or infection should merit an immediate call to your dentist.
  2. Take it easy after your implant surgery. Try to stay home from work for a day or so and rest.
  3. Plan to have meals that are easy to cook and eat on hand.
  4. Avoid hard and crunchy foods for a week or so. Smoothies, soups, and ice cream are encouraged.
  5. An ice pack applied for a short time might help with inflammation.

For more information on options for dental implants, speak to a local dentist.