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Mini implants are a smaller version of regular implants. Typically, to be considered a candidate for regular dental implants, you must first have sufficient bone mass in your jaw. However, tooth loss causes bone loss, turning the situation into a vicious cycle. Mini implants help you to avoid the need for a bone graft, which requires several months on its own (up to a year) of healing.

Mini implants consist of a tiny titanium rod, approximately the diameter of a toothpick. Instead of being capped with an abutment, mini implants are created with a small ball on the exposed end. This provides an anchor for the elastic O-rings that attach your teeth to the implant.


There are several benefits to the use of mini implants:

  • They do not require as much bone mass for proper osseointegration. This means that they can be an option for those who have suffered bone loss, helping you to avoid the need for a bone graft.

  • Because the implants are smaller, they can fit into smaller areas of your mouth (they are ideal for smaller teeth).

  • Because the implants are smaller, surgery is less invasive, and therefore also requires less downtime than with regular dental implants.

  • They are less expensive than regular dental implants.

Mini implants can also be used to stabilize traditional dentures. Typically, traditional dentures are held in place by suction, supported by your gum tissue. Even with a properly fitted denture, they can come loose, and slide around on your gums. Not only are you faced with a potentially embarrassing situation, but your mobile dentures can also rub against your gums, causing painful denture sores. This issue is particularly common in the lower jaw. Mini implants can help to stabilize your dentures, preventing these issues from occurring, providing you with an alternative to denture adhesives.


While implants and mini implants are both options available to replace missing teeth, there are several differences between the two:

  • Regular dental implants require substantial bone mass for proper osseointegration to occur. Mini implants can be used when you have experienced bone loss, as a way to avoid dentures.

  • Mini implants are smaller than regular implants. While mini implants are about the thickness of a toothpick, regular implants are about 3.4 to 5.8 millimeters in diameter. Because mini implants are so small, they can be used for smaller teeth.

  • Mini implants do not use abutments or screws as regular implants do. Instead, the teeth are held in place by elastic O-rings on a ball at the top of the implant.

  • Mini implants can be used to stabilize traditional dentures, which helps to keep them securely in place (rather than being faced with your dentures coming loose and causing both embarrassment and pain).

  • Because mini implants are so small, the surgical procedure is much less invasive. It also means your downtime after surgery is shortened.

  • Mini implants cost less than regular dental implants.

  • Regular dental implants provide more stability, and a much longer-term solution (they are considered to be a permanent solution to tooth loss). Because they are smaller, mini implants may not be as stable, or last as long.

  • In some cases, two mini implants are needed to provide the same support as one regular dental implant.

Both dental implants and mini implants are great options for replacing missing teeth that come with numerous benefits. To find out if you are a candidate, call Parkway Prosthodontics today at (904) 647-5793 to schedule a complimentary Implant Consultation with Dr. Kathryn Ryan!

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Dr. Kathryn Ryan provides personalized prosthodontic care to help her patients maintain beautiful, healthy smiles. She is dedicated to the highest level of care: 

Certificate of Specialty in Prosthodontics and a Master of Science Degree from Marquette University School of Dentistry.

Completed a three-year Residency Program in Fixed and Removable Prosthodontics and Implant and Maxillofacial Prosthetics.

Completed an Implant Surgery Fellowship at University of Florida College of Dentistry

Dr. Kathryn Ryan has advanced education and training in the latest dental implant placement techniques and is able to deliver stunning, long-lasting results for our patients. Her rigorous education developed her abilities to treat the most complex type of dental patient, which is her passion.. 

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