kinds of dental implants, mini implant

We are often asked in our Fort Worth office about what kinds of dental implants we place. All dental implants are made out of similar material – titanium or titanium alloy, and while there are slight differences in the design between manufacturers, the majority of difference in implants comes in the size of diameter. So when asked what size of implants we place in our office, the answer is simple: all of them. Our philosophy is to choose the implant that is right for the patient’s available bone, rather than try to alter their bone to fit the preferred implant.

When discussing dental implant types, there can be a lot of confusion. To help explain the differences, we’ve provided a short guide that will clarify what these differences mean for you.

Traditional Dental Implants

Also referred to as “standard-size” implants, traditional implants range in size from around three millimeters to eight millimeters. The larger (or thicker in diameter) the implant, the more invasive the procedure is to place it. Traditional implants almost always have multiple parts, which make them much more expensive to purchase, and this price gets passed on to the total cost of the treatment plan. This category of implants is the most widely used by oral surgeons and periodontists. At the Dental Implant Place, we do place this kind of implant when it is needed, but many people simply do not have enough bone for the larger implant.

Small Diameter Implants

Sometimes confused with mini implants, small diameter implants are smaller than traditional implants (they are between two and three millimeters) but slightly larger in diameter than mini implants. This type of implant also offers the minimally invasive convenience of minis while providing a generally more stable base for dentures, crowns, and bridges. The majority of implants in this category are only one-piece and therefore less expensive. This is the type of dental implant that we place most often in our Fort Worth office, as we usually find it to offer the strength and stability of the traditional implant AND the minimally invasiveness and cost advantages of a smaller size.

Mini Implants

The smallest dental implant available in dentistry is the mini implant, which is two millimeters or less in diameter. Mini implants are gaining popularity worldwide due to their more affordable cost (when compare with standard implants) and smaller size. We sometimes use this size of implants when the available bone is minimal.

Why We Offer All Types of Implants

While most oral surgeons and dentists place only one category of dental implant, the fact of the matter is that the type of implant that’s right for you depends on your unique, specific bone structure. Some patients, for example, may not have enough bone in their jaw for a traditional-sized implant, and placing an implant that is too large could cause sinus damage or worse. They may need small diameter dental implants in order to retain their osseous tissue. Other patients may even need a combination of traditional and mini dental implants in order to have a firm foundation for their denture or bridge.

As the founder of The Dental Implant Place, Dr. Steve Brown is a dentist with exceptional experience and skill (he’s placed over 8,000 in the course of his career). He is capable of placing any classification of implant, and he recommends placing the specific type that is right for your specific bone structure with an eye on maintaining the minimally invasive approach.

Schedule Your Free Consultation Today

For more information on all dental implant types and which are right for you, call our Fort Worth office. We’d be happy to answer your questions and set up your visit with Dr. Brown, where you can learn more about your options and take the next step towards restoring your quality of life. Your smile is here at The Dental Implant Place, and we look forward to seeing you.


photo credit Mike Stanley, Flickr creative commons