Types of Dental Implants

implantsNo two smiles are alike, and at Dental Implant Center of Oklahoma we understand that different patients have different needs. Analyzing health conditions and risk factors are of primary concern when determining whether you are a candidate. While most people are candidates, each situation requires different attention and treatment planning to reduce risk of failures. When our board certified dental implantologist, Dr. Chris Ward, consults with you, he will use his expertise to help you identify the best dental implant option for your personal situation.

Dental implants are commonly made of a titanium alloy (mainly Ti-6Al-4V), which is extremely biocompatible. They have a mixture of metals as pure titanium is too soft. Dental implants are also being made with Zirconia which is a powderized metal that, after sintering, is a tooth colored, strong, biocompatible material. It has only been FDA approved since 2011 so less research is available for long-term success rates.

implantsEndosteal implants are used in the majority of implant cases. Endosteal translates to “within bone”. These dental implants are greater than 3mm in diameter and are primarily designed to support teeth individually. Later, in the 1998, they were used in the All-on-4® concept and have evolved over time to be a great solution for a full arch application. They are placed directly into the jaw. They also consist of an abutment that connects the crown to the implant, and finally a crown to replace the tooth shape and color. All together, this is known as an implant restoration.

implants Mini-implants are also common, and generally are implants less than 3mm in diameter. They are easier to place surgically and require less expertise. The primary application is to use them in a temporary situation to help while bone graft procedures are maturing for more definitive care, to retain dentures (which essentially replaces the glue), or in very small spaces where a single front small tooth is needing replaced.

As research continues, there are more types of dental implants that may allow you to be a candidate for treatment where in the past it didn’t exist. These are Zygomatic and Pterygoid implants. These are used primarily when you have severe bone loss that previously supported your teeth. With this option, it is possible to utilize other bones in and around the mouth to allow immediate connection to attached teeth. It is a more complex dental implant procedure with greater risk and only placed by expert dental implantologists.

implantsSubperiosteal implants are complex procedure where instead of using a single implant screw for stabilization, we use a metal frame that is attached on top of the jawbone and beneath the gums. This metal frame has a series of connectors that come through the gums which are then used to support the placement of a dental prosthetic like a denture or bridge.

Transosteal implants are another complex implant procedure where on the lower jaw when very little bone exists, a plate is attached below the jaw and screws are fixated through the jaw to the plate which can support a prosthesis like a denture or bridge. It is the least common dental implant procedure and only used in rare cases.

If you are unsure which option is right for you, call (918) 906-2525 today. Our dental implantologist can give you a consultation for dental implants in Tulsa, Oklahoma, to help you make the best choice for your smile.