The most economical method to secure a denture is the use of mini-implants. Mini implants work under the same principles of regular implants except they are much smaller in diameter and the procedure to place them is much simpler. This makes the use of mini implants much less expensive, about half the cost.
Are Mini-Implants Right for You?
What Are Mini Dental Implants?
A Mini-implant consists of a miniature 1.8mm diameter titanium/alloy implant (pictured on the right)that acts like the root of a tooth and a retaining fixture containing an o-ring that is incorporated into the base of a patient’s denture. The head of the implant is shaped like a ball and the retaining fixture acts like a socket. The o-ring snaps over the ball when the denture is seated and holds the denture at a predetermined level of force. When seated, the denture gently rests on the patient’s gum tissue. This makes for a reasonably secure denture.
Is the Mini Dental Implant FDA approved?
Yes. After providing satisfactory technical and clinical evidence to the FDA that the product was safe for public use and in fact had beneficial attributes, the FDA granted its formal consent to market the Mini Dental Implant device not only as a transitional or temporary dental product, but significantly, as a long-term item. (IMTEC was the first company to receive long-term approval of its MDI implants from the FDA, and for several years, was the only company to have that distinction.)
What's the primary and most effective use for Mini Dental Implants?
The most effective use of this unique dental product is stabilization of a lower denture. There are approximately 50,000,000 people in the United States who are "edentulous" (literally meaning lacking teeth) who struggle daily with denture devices. A majority suffer a great deal of discomfort as a result of lose or ill-fitting dentures.
Many denture wearers simply withdraw from any type of social engagement as a result of being compelled to wear them. Moreover, it's not uncommon for family members to complain about a denture wearer's disagreeable breath as a result of food being trapped and decaying under their denture prosthesis.
Successful placement of the Mini Dental Implant addresses and solves all of these social and practical problems. Denture patients all over the world have experienced relief from loose or ill-fitting dentures from doctors who are trained to place the mini implants. Uniquely, mini-implants can be utilized to stabilize a denture in a couple of hours by a trained doctor, with the patient leaving the office with a stabilized prosthesis.
How specifically can Mini Dental Implants help denture wearers?
The standard insertion protocol for mini dental implants calls for four of them to be gently screwed into the front of a patient's lower jaw. This is a relatively painless procedure that can be performed by a general dentist, requiring only a mild anesthesia. The mini dental implants, which are approximately the size of wooden toothpicks, are placed about five millimeters apart in the patient's mandible. The patient's denture is then carefully adjusted by the dentist to allow it to snap onto the four mini implants. The result? A tight fitting, completely reliable system that allows a patient to speak and eat with confidence.
The Mini Dental Implants are placed in about an hour's time. Because of the unique, minimally invasive procedure, the minute size of the implants, and the characteristic placement area, the typical Mini Dental Implant patient can enjoy a light meal an hour or so after having the mini implants placed. A denture patient who has had his or her denture stabilized with mini-implants can remove and replace the denture easily after a little practice, and can easily utilize good dental hygiene.
What about failures with Mini Dental Implants?
It must be recognized that all implant systems as well as natural teeth are subject to potential failure due to natural causes, including osteoporosis, poor oral hygiene, wear and tear attrition, poor health, heavy, stressful biting habits, and lack of follow-up dental maintenance care.
Mini implants similarly do not carry any actual or implied guarantee as to longevity. However, the loss of a Mini Dental Implant is a far less critical event to the patient since it may be replaced at relatively minimal cost and with minimal associated bone or gum damage
What type surgery is involved with Mini Dental Implants?
A single, minimally invasive surgery is needed for insertion of the Mini Dental Implants. The implants are then put into immediate biting or "loading" function thanks to their "self-tapping" design, thereby anchoring a snap-in denture system. As a result, it is often possible to provide the complete mini implant service in a single office visit.
What will my first day be like with Mini Dental Implants?
Leave the denture in place until bedtime. You should not experience any excessive bleeding. There will be some mild discomfort but this should be minimal and controlled by recommended pain medication. The denture should feel secure.
You may eat as soon as you wish to avoid excessively hard or sticky foods at first. Upon removing the denture, rinse your mouth with an antiseptic mouthwash and carefully clean around each implant fixture with a cotton swab and toothpaste. Use a cotton swab for three days. After that, use your toothbrush.
How do I place & remove my dentures?
The Mini Dental Implants and O-ring fixture must be clean and free from debris. Grasp the denture with both hands and lightly seat the denture, feeling that the O-rings are resting above the ball head of the implants, then press down firmly and equally on both sides. Make sure that you feel the implant heads easily fitting each O-ring. You will feel the denture snap into place. If you have trouble seating your denture, first make sure the implants and your denture are absolutely clean.
Secondly, make sure that you push downward equally on both sides. If you are still experiencing difficulty, see if a family member can give you assistance. To remove the denture, place your thumbs under each side of the lower denture rim and gently push both sides upward at the same time.
What's a typical daily routine one might expect once the Mini Dental Implants have been placed?
As with all dental applications, there's a short adjustment period during which time you become comfortable placing and removing the denture. Typically, this involves removal of the lower denture in the morning, brushing the gums and implant area with a toothbrush, rinsing the mouth, rinsing the denture itself, then replacing it.
You must clean and brush the ball of the implant as if they were your natural teeth. As with natural teeth food and bacterial debris must be removed or inflammation of the gums will occur. In addition, food and debris can be forced into the O-ring fixture causing improper seating and loss of retention. The O-ring fixture must also be cleaned out.
The result is a normal day's activity for you, including eating, talking, taking a nap, etc. Then, in the evening, the denture is usually removed again, the toothbrush is used, and the mouth thoroughly rinsed. The result is a fully functioning dental appliance that works.
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