“Can Mini-implants Be Used To Replace My Missing Molars?”

I have been reading about Mini Implants’ reduced cost and how they can be placed without surgery and I prefer to have mini implants instead of the regular implants.  Can Mini Implants Be Used To Replace My Missing Molars?

I have been asked this question recently and many times in the past.  The idea of replacing missing teeth with mini-implants is very appealing to patients. Let’s look at the reasons why:


The reasons mini-implants are appealing are:
1- Lower cost
2- Avoids the need for surgery to place the implants. 

Two other benefits commonly associated with mini-implants are a simpler procedure and being able to function immediately with them.


Among the disadvantages of mini-implants, the first and most important one is a higher failure rate than regular implants.  This is associated with the last benefit named above: Immediate function.  By placing them in function immediately, any forces applied to them after placement may cause them to fail.  The high success of regular implants can be attributed to a period of healing after placement when they are allowed to fuse to the bone undisturbed under the gums, something that mini-implants do not have.

One characteristic remains that patients fail to take into account many times when requesting mini implants, and that is their size.  When you look at a mini-implant, you can see that their circumference or their “thickness” is similar to that of a round toothpick (about 2 mm), and the regular implant is about twice that size or 4 mm in diameter.  This is important in terms of good engineering when expecting an implant to take the same forces and function as the root of a tooth.  So common sense engineering principles tells us that as you go further back in the mouth, where chewing forces are greatest, and teeth have larger and also multiple roots, the mini-implants are not a sensible choice.  Regular diameter implants should be used in the molar area.  The only time I would consider putting mini implants in the molar area would be in an edentulous patient using a large number of splinted mini-implants against a complete denture.

Mini implants are a great solution for selected cases, but not all situations fit mini-implants.

Thanks for reading, and if you need to contact me, you can get my contact information below, or leave a comment.

Dentist In West Palm Beach
Carlos Boudet, DDS
1840 Forest Hill Blvd, Suite 204
West Palm Beach, Florida  33406
Phone: Call 561-968-6022

Website: http://www.boudetdds.com
Blog:  http://mywestpalmbeachdentist.blogspot.com
Spanish Website:  http://www.palmbeachdentist.net

About Carlos Boudet, DDS, DICOI

Dr. Boudet is a graduate of the Medical College of Virginia. After graduating with a DDS degree in 1980, he became a commissioned officer for the United States Public Health Service. When his tour of duty ended in 1982 he received an award for outstanding service. He was asked to serve as Dental Director for Florida Community Heath Centers, supervise the operation of four dental clinics around lake Okeechobee. He established his dental practice in West Palm Beach in 1983 and has been in the same location for 30 years. He is a Diplomate of the International Congress of Oral Implantologists, a member of the Central Palm Beach County Dental Society and a chairman of the Advanced Crown and Bridge course of the Atlantic Coast Dental Research Clinic. His articles on prosthodontics and implants have been published in several popular dental magazines.

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