Types of Dental Implants
If you are missing teeth, dental implants and implant-supported restorations offer the opportunity to restore the full function and beauty of your smile. A single missing tooth can be replaced with an implant-supported crown, several teeth with an implant-supported bridge, or a full arch with an implant-supported denture. Before beginning your treatment, it is important to consider the types of dental implants available and how they can serve your needs. Your dentist or oral surgeon can review your options and help you decide which is best.
Understanding Your Options
It is important to distinguish the dental implant from the restoration. Dental implants are small posts, typically made from titanium, which are embedded in your jaw. They can be divided into several categories based on their size and shape, as well as the technique used for placement. Dental implants can support a range of restorations, including crowns, bridges, and dentures.
The size of an implant, or the platform, affects where it can be positioned inside the mouth. The three main sizes are:
- Standard platform implants: Usually ranging from 3.5mm to 4.2mm in diameter, standard platform implants are placed in the front part of the mouth.
- Wide platform implants: This implant is typically used to replace molars in the back of the mouth and ranges in diameter from 4.5mm to 6mm.
- Mini, or narrow, implants: For patients with spacing issues or insufficient bone density, a mini implant can restore candidacy for dental implants treatment. This type of implant typically ranges from 2mm to 3.5mm in diameter and requires less available bone than standard implants.