Mini Dental Implant: Definition, Advantages & Disadvantages and Average Cost

Mini dental implants, or MDIs or mini denture implants, are a form of dental implant smaller than standard implants and used to hold dental prostheses in place. Examples of dental prostheses include crowns, bridges, and dentures. Titanium mini dental implants (MDIs) are surgically placed into the jawbone to provide a secure anchor for dental prostheses. One of the benefits of MDIs is that the treatment itself is less invasive, which results in less pain, less swelling, and a shorter amount of time needed to recover from the procedure. They are placed in areas where standard implants do not fit, and their cost is far lower than that of standard implants as a result of their reduced diameter.

MDIs are not appropriate for everyone because of the increased risk of implant failure as well as other potential adverse effects such as infection or discomfort. The average cost of MDIs is calculated by considering the number of implants placed and the operation's geographic location.

What is a Mini Dental Implant?

Mini Dental Implants Definition

A tiny dental implant (MDI) has a narrower diameter than a standard dental implant. It is intended to support crowns, bridges, or dentures. A ball-shaped attachment that serves as a connection for a denture or other dental repair is placed on top of a titanium post in the jawbone to create a mini dental implant. The denture or restoration is easily removed and inserted thanks to the ball-shaped attachment.

Mini dental implants are now frequently utilised for long-term denture stabilisation and as an alternative to conventional dental implants in situations where there is insufficient jawbone mass. The material used to create mini dental implants is commonly titanium, which is biocompatible and able to osseointegrate with the jawbone. Mini dental implants are made from other materials, including zirconia and ceramic.

The size of mini dental implants is the primary distinction between them and conventional dental implants. Mini dental implants are less intrusive and enable a speedier, less painful recovery because they have a smaller diameter and shorter length. Mini dental implants are more suitable for people with low bone density or not candidates for standard dental implants because they require less bone mass. The use of dental implant techniques to complete examinations by a dental expert is required to ascertain whether they are the best option for a given patient.

Dr. Victor Sendax developed tiny dental implants (MDIs) to make dental implants easier to get and less expensive in 1970. The first MDIs came out in the year 1990. They have become more popular as an alternative to traditional implants since then. They are better than traditional implants. They cause less pain, oedema, and recovery time because they are smaller, and the surgery to put them in is less intrusive.

Mini dental implants are frequently employed as a material in constructing MDIs since titanium is biocompatible and performs well in dentistry. Titanium is an excellent material for the base of the dental prosthetic because it bonds well to the jawbone, is sturdy, and is lightweight. Depending on the requirements and preferences of the patient, various types of MDIs, such as those constructed of zirconia or ceramic, are available.

There are many ways in which ordinary and miniature dental implants differ, but one of the most significant distinctions is the size of the implants. It is possible to place them in areas of the mouth inaccessible to traditional implants due to the diminutive size of mini implants. The patient has less discomfort after the procedure and recovers quickly because MDIs need less invasive surgery. There is a greater risk of the implant failing and experiencing other adverse effects, such as infection or pain when using MDIs. MDI denotes the fact that not everyone makes use of them.

Dr. Victor Sendax developed micro dental implants as an alternative to traditional implants that were more affordable and easily accessible in the 1970s. They are placed in areas of the mouth that traditional implants do not reach because they are often composed of titanium and have a smaller diameter than conventional implants. It allows them to replace missing teeth. Not everyone is a good candidate for getting one, despite mini dental implants having a few advantages over standard implants. They have a significantly increased risk of implant failure and other adverse effects.

Who is an ideal candidate for a Mini Dental Implant?

A person who needs a dental prosthetic, such as a denture, bridge, or crown, and has lost one or more teeth is a good candidate for a small dental implant. The candidate has to have sufficient jawbone density to support the implant. Osseointegration, a procedure that fuses the implant with the jawbone, is necessary in order to give the stability required to maintain the dental prosthetic.

Mini dental implants are especially helpful for patients, not good candidates for regular implants due to their reduced diameter and greater placement flexibility. It means that even persons with weak bone mass, missing front teeth, or narrow ridges benefit from micro dental implants.

A person is not a good candidate for micro dental implants due to a number of circumstances. Patients with severe gum disease, poor dental hygiene, or those with radiation therapy in the jaw area are not good candidates. Patients who grind their teeth excessively or have a history of clenching their teeth are not a good fit.

A trained dentist or oral surgeon assesses the patient's oral health, medical history, and other characteristics to determine if they are an appropriate candidate for the surgery before the patient decides to have a small dental implant procedure.

A person who needs a dental prosthetic and has sufficient jawbone density to sustain the implant is an appropriate candidate for a small dental implant. Mini dental implants are appropriate for people with less bone mass or thin ridges because they have more placement possibilities than standard implants. Mini-dental implants are not an option for everyone. Thus, a trained dentist or oral surgeon assesses the patient before starting the surgery.

What are the advantages of a Mini Dental Implant?

A common choice for dental restoration, mini dental implants successfully replace missing teeth while enhancing oral health and quality of life. They are a more compact and minimally intrusive alternative to conventional dental implants. They are especially helpful for patients with weak bones or who want a less invasive tooth replacement option. Mini dental implants' adaptability, which allows them to support a variety of dental restorations and be used to replace one or several teeth, is one of their main advantages.

Listed below are the advantages of a Mini Dental Implant.

  • A less invasive procedure: MDIs are smaller in width than regular implants and less painful to put into the jawbone. The process leads to less pain, less swelling, and faster healing.
  • Cost-effective: Given that they are less expensive than traditional implants, mini dental implants are more accessible to many people.
  • Faster treatment time: The less invasive feature of the MDI insertion technique reduces treatment time. A patient's denture is attached, and their MDIs are sometimes implanted on the same day.
  • Suitable for individuals with low bone density: MDIs are a suitable alternative for persons with low bone mass or those not candidates for conventional dental implants due to the minimal bone density necessary for insertion.
  • Secure denture stabilisation: MDIs offer dentures secure stabilisation, preventing them from slipping or shifting while the wearer is speaking or eating.

Mini dental implants have many benefits, such as being slightly invasive, quick and easy to put in, cost-effective, flexible, making teeth more stable, and lowering the risk of bone loss. These benefits of dental implants are a good choice for people who are missing teeth or need dental work.

What are the disadvantages of a Mini Dental Implant?

Listed below are the disadvantages of a Mini Dental Implant.

  • Limited durability: MDIs do not last as long as conventional implants and require more frequent replacement.
  • Not appropriate in all circumstances: MDIs are not appropriate in all circumstances, and a full assessment by a dental professional is required to ascertain whether they are the best option for a given patient.
  • Limited placement options: MDIs are inappropriate for some deployment places or circumstances due to their smaller size.
  • Implant failure risk: Implant failure risk necessitates further operations or replacement, as with any dental implant.
  • Limited study and evidence: Compared to conventional implants, MDIs have less long-term success and durability.

Some possible problems with mini dental implants include a higher risk of implant failure than traditional implants, limited use in cases where more extensive bone grafting is needed, and choosing patients to ensure a successful result carefully. Some patients feel pain or swelling after the surgery, and the implant is unsuitable for people with certain health problems. Patients need to talk to their doctor about the disadvantages of dental implants and the benefits of mini dental implants to figure out if it is the right choice for them.

What are the Dental Assessments needed before a Mini Dental Implant?

Listed below are the Dental Assessments needed before a Mini Dental Implant.

  • Comprehensive dental examination: A comprehensive dental examination assesses the patient's general oral health, including their teeth, gums, and jawbone.
  • Radiographs: Radiographs, such as X-rays or CT scans, are required to assess the patient's jawbone's quality and quantity and the location of the small dental implant.
  • Occlusal examination: Examine to assess the patient's bite, jaw alignment, and any potential dental wear, an occlusal examination is required.
  • Review of medical history: Review to ascertain whether the patient has any underlying medical issues that have an impact on the outcome of the treatment, a review of their medical history is required.
  • Discussion of risks and expectations: The dentist speaks with the patient about any possible dangers and their expectations for the procedure.
  • Evaluation of oral hygiene: The patient's ability to maintain good oral hygiene both before and after the micro dental implant treatment was ascertained by conducting an oral hygiene evaluation.

These examinations enable the dentist to decide whether the patient qualifies for small dental implants and develop a customised treatment strategy that considers their particular requirements and objectives.

The particular situation and the evaluation carried out by the dental professional determine whether or not bone grafting is necessary and what surface implant therapy is required.

Bone grafting is needed if the patient does not have enough bone mass in the jaw to support the small dental implant. Bone grafting is utilised in these situations to strengthen the jawbone and create an ideal environment for the implant. Bone material from another area of the patient's body or a synthetic bone replacement is used to be grafted into the jawbone during the bone grafting operation.

The type of small dental implant used and the specific situation influence the surface implant treatment. Surface treatments for mini dental implants range from smooth to rough to textured. The surface treatment affects how well the implant integrates with the jawbone, which affects the procedure's outcome.

Rough or textured implants are desirable in situations requiring bone grafting or in people with insufficient bone density. However, smooth-surfaced implants are appropriate in some cases where there is sufficient bone mass and stability. The implant's surface area is increased, and osseointegration, the process of merging with the jawbone, is improved because of the rough or textured surface.

The final decision on the requirement for bone grafting and the surface preparation for the small dental implant is made after the dentist has evaluated the patient's oral health.

How is the process of a Mini Dental Implant done?

Below are the six steps of how a Mini Dental Implant is done.

  • Getting a dental X-ray before the Dental Implant. This stage entails capturing radiographic imaging of the patient's teeth and jawbone to pinpoint the precise placement and size of the implant that is required. The dentist decides the type and size of the implant that is going to be utilized by using the X-ray to assess the quality and density of the patient's jawbone.
  • Injecting an anaesthetic to numb your gums and jaw. The dentist applies a local anaesthetic to the patient's gums and jaw after the X-ray to lessen any pain or discomfort during the process. The anaesthetic is injected directly into the area where the implant is going to be placed, thoroughly numbing the area to ensure the patient's comfort throughout the process.
  • Making a small incision in your jaw. The dentist is going to create a little incision in the gum tissue to reach the jawbone once the area is numb. The type and size of the implant that is used to determine the size of the incision. The dentist carefully lifts it to reveal the jawbone behind the gum tissue.
  • Inserting the small metal dental implant post into the incision. The dentist places the tiny metal dental implant post into the jawbone after making the incision. A biocompatible material, typically titanium, is used to create the implant, which merges with the jawbone to give a stable base for the replacement tooth.
  • Tighten and secure the implant post. The dentist uses specialized equipment to tighten and secure the implant post into the jawbone after it has been placed. It must be properly fastened to keep the implant from shifting or coming loose throughout the healing process.
  • Attaching the replacement tooth to the Dental Implant post. The dentist attaches the replacement tooth to the implant post once it has been firmly set in place. Typically, a little connecting piece that is screwed onto the implant post is used for this. The replacement tooth is supported by the connecting component.
  • Ensuring the replacement tooth is securely placed. The replacement tooth is carefully positioned by the dentist to ensure that it is identical in size, shape, and colour to the patient's natural teeth. The dentist will also examine the patient's bite to make sure the tooth is properly aligned with the other teeth. Aftercare instructions are subsequently given to the patient to ensure that the implant heals correctly.

What are the possible risks and complications after a Mini Dental Implant?

The tlist below shows the possible risks and complications after a mini dental implant process, as well as what they are, how to avoid them, how to treat them, and what their long-term effects are.

Infection: Infection can occur when bacteria enter the implant site, leading to pain, swelling, and bleeding. Proper oral hygiene and following post-operative care guidelines can help prevent infection. Treatment may involve antibiotics and, in severe cases, removal of the implant. If left untreated, infection can cause the implant to fail or damage the surrounding teeth and tissues.

Implant Failure: Implant failure refers to the loss of integration between the implant and the jawbone, resulting in instability or loosening of the implant over time. Proper patient screening, good oral hygiene practices, and adherence to aftercare instructions can help prevent implant failure. Treatment options may include replacement or removal of the implant, sometimes requiring additional procedures like bone grafting. Long-term implications can lead to the need for further operations or treatments to restore functionality.

Implant Displacement: Implant displacement occurs when the implant moves or becomes loose, causing discomfort and affecting the fit of dentures or other replacements. Proper evaluation and patient selection, careful placement of the implant, and following post-operative instructions are crucial in preventing implant displacement. Treatment may involve implant removal or replacement, potentially requiring additional procedures. Long-term implications may necessitate further treatments or procedures such as bone grafting.

Nerve or Tissue Damage: Damage to nearby nerves or soft tissues can result in numbness, discomfort, or loss of sensation. Proper evaluation and patient selection, precise implant placement, and adherence to aftercare instructions are important for preventing nerve or tissue damage. Treatment may involve surgical correction or implant replacement. Long-term implications can include permanent nerve damage or loss of function.

Allergic Reaction: Some individuals may experience an allergic reaction to the materials used in the implant. Proper evaluation and patient selection, including checking for allergies, are important preventive measures. In cases of allergic reactions, the implants may need to be removed and replaced with alternative materials. Additional treatment or surgery may be required based on individual circumstances.

Bone Loss: Improper bonding between the implant and the jawbone can lead to bone loss. Correct patient evaluation, maintaining good oral health, and following aftercare instructions are important for preventing bone loss. Treatment options may include implant removal, repair, or the addition of bone to support the implant. Bone loss can cause further complications or implant failure over time.

It is significant to emphasize that not all patients encounter these risks or problems, and the likelihood of doing so is decreased by adhering to appropriate evaluation, treatment, and aftercare protocols.

How much is the average cost of a Mini Dental Implant?

The location, the materials used to make it, and the amount required all have an impact on the typical cost of a mini dental implant. Mini dental implants cost between £500 and £1,500, compared to several tiny dental implants, which range in price from £1,500 to £6,000 or more.

It's important to know that small dental implants cost less than standard dental implants, even though they require less invasive processes and materials. The price changes depending on the situation and what the doctor has to pay.

Some things that affect how much tiny dental implants cost are materials, fees, pre-implant surgeries, and care and maintenance. The price of the tiny dental implant depends on the material picked. Implants made of zirconia or ceramic cost less than those made of titanium.

The cost of the procedure depends on the dentist's experience, schooling, and where he or she is located. They need other surgeries before the small dental implant surgery like bone grafting or extractions, which add to the total cost. The price includes the cost of maintenance, follow-up visits, and care for the implant.

Patients need to talk to their doctor and insurance company about how much they have to pay out of pocket for small dental implants. It was thought about how much the cost of dental implants saves money and is better in the long run than dentures or bridges.

How long is the recovery of a Mini Dental Implant?

The length of time it takes to heal from a mini dental implant depends on a number of things, such as the specific case, the number of implants put in, and the patient's general health. Most expect to return to normal in a few days to a few weeks after the surgery.

Patients feel pain, swelling, and bruising around the implant site after the operation. Painkillers and ice packs are effective treatments for these symptoms, which often go away in a few days.

Patients need to follow specific aftercare instructions to make sure they heal properly and lower the risk of problems. Following specific aftercare instructions means avoiding hard or crunchy foods, smoking, or drinking alcohol for a few days after the process. It means brushing and flossing their teeth regularly to keep their mouth clean.

Some things that affect how long it takes to heal and get back to normal after a mini dental implant treatment are bone density, implant position, pre-existing medical conditions, and aftercare.

People with less dense bones need more time for the implant to properly bond with their jawbone. The position of the implant changes how long it takes to heal. Usually, implants in the front of the mouth heal faster than those in the back. Diabetes or problems with the immune system, for example, slows down the healing process and makes issues more likely.

Taking good care of themselves after surgery, like eating well and brushing their teeth, helps them heal faster and lowers their risk of problems. Patients talk to their dentist about how long the dental implant recovery takes and what they need to do afterwards for the best possible result after a mini dental implant procedure.

How long do Mini Dental Implants last?

The length of time that small dental implants last depends on many things, such as how well the patient takes care of his or her teeth, the quality of the implant, and the health of the patient's jawbone as a whole. Mini tooth implants last between five and ten years or longer with proper care and maintenance.

Studies have shown that small dental implants work up to 95% of the time after five years and up to 80% of the time after ten years. There are several factors that have an impact on the implant’s lifespan, including oral hygiene, jawbone health, implant quality, patient health, and aftercare.

Good oral hygiene, like brushing and cleaning their teeth regularly, helps lower the risk of infection and other problems that causes implants to fail. The health of the jawbone is important for an implant to work, and things like bone mass and bone loss affect how long the implant lasts. The type and quality of the material used to make the implant affect how long it lasts.

High-quality materials tend to last longer than lower-quality ones. Diabetes or problems with the immune system, for example, makes it harder for the body to heal and raise the risk of issues that causes an implant to fail. Proper aftercare, such as going to the doctor for regular checkups and practising good oral hygiene, helps the implant last longer.

Overall, a mini dental implant's length depends on several factors. A patient needs to talk to their dentist about their specific case to find out how long their dental implant lifespan lasts and how to take care of it properly.

Do Mini Dental Implants need to be cleaned regularly?

Yes, mini dental implants need to be cleaned regularly to keep their mouth healthy and make them last longer. Plaque and germs build up around the implant, which leads to infections, inflammation, and other problems that make the implant less stable and less likely to last for a long time.

Brushing and flossing the area around micro dental implants as part of everyday oral care practices is a regular cleaning procedure. Patients gently clean the implant and gum tissue around it with a soft-bristled toothbrush and non-abrasive toothpaste. They need to be careful not to use too much pressure, which damages the implant or gum tissue.

Patients make regular appointments with their dentist in addition to brushing and flossing their teeth regularly to make sure the implant is working well and to catch any potential problems early on. The dentist suggests special tools on how to clean dental implants, like interdental brushes or water flossers, to help clean areas around the implant that are hard to reach.

Cleaning and caring for mini dental implants the right way helps them last longer and avoid problems that lead to implant failure or other mouth health problems.

Are there alternatives for Mini Dental Implant?

 Mini Dental Implants Definition

Yes, there are alternatives for Mini Dental Implants, including conventional dental implants, bridges, and dentures. Traditional dental implants necessitate larger implants and a more extensive surgical process than micro dental implants. These implants generally come with tremendous solidity and lifespan, making them ideal for people who have lost numerous teeth or have experienced significant bone loss.

Contrarily, bridges are a non-surgical substitute for missing teeth that rely on nearby healthy teeth or implants for support. People who avoid detachable dental restorations prefer bridges because they are anchored in place.

Dentures are another solution for missing teeth. They are removable and composed of either plastic or porcelain. They are frequently used by patients who have lost most or all of their teeth, and they are held in place by natural teeth, implants, or a combination of the two. The patient's particular needs, financial situation, and oral health state ultimately dictate the selected dental restoration. Patients need to talk to their dentist about their choices and find out which alternatives to dental implants work best for them in their particular situation.

Are Mini Dental Implants Ideal for Adults?

Yes, mini dental implants are the best option for individuals who have lost many teeth or need a lot of dental work to enhance their oral health and quality of life. Micro dental implants are especially helpful for those with weak bones or who prefer a non-invasive option for tooth replacement.

Mini dental implants serve a purpose for patients of all ages, but because adult jaws are completely created, they are typically used to replace lost teeth in adults. Their jaws are still developing, so their jaws are still developing, young people are not suitable candidates for tiny dental implants.

It is essential to remember that the suitability of small dental implants is evaluated on a case-by-case basis since every patient is unique. Mini dental implants are the greatest option for a patient's specific requirements and oral health after speaking with their dentist for a patient's specific requirements and oral health after speaking with their dentist is mini dental implants.

Is the mini dental implant procedure the same as the dental treatment implant procedure?

Yes, there are some variations because mini implants are smaller than standard implants, but the tiny dental implant technique is identical to the typical dental implant treatment procedures. The fundamental processes in both procedures are dental evaluation, implant insertion, healing, and restoration.

The dentist checks the patient's dental health during the assessment phase to determine whether the implant treatment is appropriate. Taking dental X-rays, determining bone density, and analysing the patient's general health are necessary.

The implant post is surgically inserted into the jawbone, after which there is a healing phase during which the implant merges with the surrounding bone tissue. The duration of the procedure, known as osseointegration, is usually many months.

The restoration phase, in which the replacement tooth or teeth are connected to the implant post, starts after the implant has healed. The restoration involves a dental crown, bridge, or denture, depending on the patient's demands.

The size and location of mini implants vary because of their smaller size, even though the basic elements of implant surgery are the same for both types. The optimal type of implant for a patient's particular demands and state of dental health is determined after a patient and dentist have discussed their alternatives. Dental treatment implants benefit patients who need a less invasive tooth replacement option or have low bone density.

Is the Mini Dental Implant procedure painful?

No, the mini dental implant surgery is uncomfortable, although it is not typically regarded as painful. The dentist makes the treated area feel as comfortable as possible during the process and is made to feel as comfortable as possible during the process by the dentist using a local anaesthetic.

Patients suffer some swelling, tenderness, or minor discomfort near the implant after the treatment. It is a typical phase of recovery and is managed with over-the-counter pain relievers or, if necessary, prescription medicine.

It is crucial for patients to adhere to the post-operative care guidelines set forth by their dentist, which involves refraining from particular meals or pursuits in order to improve healing and avert issues. Patients go to all of their dentist's follow-up visits to ensure the implant is healing well and talk about any concerns or problems that arise with their dentist to make sure implant is healing well and talk about any concerns or problems.

The micro dental implant treatment is typically well-tolerated and causes little discomfort or agony, though each patient's experience varies. Patients must discuss any worries or questions they have with their dentist before the procedure to assist in reducing any fear or uncertainty about the operation.

Is Ice cream good after a Dental Implant?

No, it is typically advised that patients refrain from eating or drinking anything hot or cold right away after the treatment. It's because extremely high or low temperatures irritate or inflame the implant site, which is susceptible to being sensitive or delicate.

It is generally advised to stick to soft, cold foods to aid healing and reduce pain for the first few days following a dental implant treatment. Yoghurt, pudding, mashed potatoes, and scrambled eggs are a few examples of the best foods to eat after a dental implant.

Patients progressively reintegrate tougher or chewier items into their diets after the initial healing phase, as tolerated. Following the dentist's post-operative care recommendations is crucial, as is avoiding foods that irritate or harm the implant site.

Dental implant patients use prudence and good judgement when deciding whether or not to indulge in ice cream following their treatment. Patients must ask their dentist for particular dietary advice after the implant treatment if they are unsure.

Dentist Dr. Dt. Erdem CETIN
Dentist Dr. Dt. Erdem CETIN

He started his professional career in a private practice in Antalya in 2005 and served there until 2012. Between 2012 and 2016, he continued his work as a partner at the institution named KlinikAntalya. In 2016, he founded Myra Dental Centre Turkey and continues his professional activities there. Additionally, he has strengthened his expertise in the field with his membership in the International Congress of Oral Implantology (ICOI).