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Types of Dental Implants
Ann Arbor, MI


A group of smiling older women with dental implants from Everwell Dentistry in Ann Arbor, MIDental implants have become a cornerstone of modern dentistry, offering solutions for various dental issues ranging from single missing teeth to complete arch replacements. Understanding the different types of dental implants can help patients make informed decisions about their dental health.

What Are Dental Implants?


Dental implants are artificial tooth roots, typically made of titanium, that are surgically inserted into the jawbone. They provide a sturdy foundation for fixed or removable replacement teeth that are designed to match natural teeth. Implants integrate with the bone through a process called osseointegration, ensuring stability and durability.

The Science Behind Osseointegration


Osseointegration is the key to the success of dental implants. This biological process involves the direct structural and functional connection between living bone and the surface of a load-bearing artificial implant. Titanium's biocompatibility facilitates this integration, as the bone cells grow and attach to the implant, ensuring stability and durability.

Long-Term Benefits of Dental Implants


Dental implants offer numerous long-term benefits beyond preventing bone loss and maintaining jaw structure. They provide a natural-looking solution, restoring full chewing and speaking abilities. Unlike dentures, implants don't slip or cause discomfort and they can last a lifetime with proper care.

Single Tooth Dental Implants


A single tooth dental implant is used to replace an individual missing tooth. This type of implant involves inserting a titanium post into the jawbone, which acts as the tooth root. After the post has integrated with the bone, an abutment is attached to the post, and a crown is placed on top of the abutment.

Single tooth implants offer numerous benefits. They look and feel like natural teeth, restoring full chewing and biting capabilities. By providing the necessary stimulation to the jawbone, they prevent bone loss. Unlike traditional dental bridges, they do not require altering adjacent teeth.

The procedure for single tooth implants begins with a comprehensive dental examination, including X-rays and possibly CT scans. The titanium post is then surgically implanted into the jawbone under local anesthesia.

The healing period lasts several months so that osseointegration can occur. Next, the abutment is attached to the implant. Finally, a custom-made crown is placed on the abutment, completing the restoration.

Endosteal Implants


Endosteal implants are the most common type of dental implants. They are typically shaped like small screws and are directly placed into the jawbone. These dental implants serve as anchors for one or more prosthetic teeth.

This type of dental implant is suitable for a wide range of patients with sufficient jawbone density. They provide excellent stability for the attached prosthetic and offer a natural appearance and function.

The procedure for endosteal dental implants involves surgically placing the implant into the jawbone. Several months are needed for healing and osseointegration, after which an abutment is attached to the implant, followed by the placement of the dental crown.

Subperiosteal Implants


Subperiosteal implants are an alternative to endosteal implants, particularly for patients who do not have sufficient bone height or density. Instead of being placed into the jawbone, these implants rest on top of the bone but under the gum tissue.

These implants are ideal for patients with insufficient bone structure. They are designed to fit the specific contours of a patient's jaw and are less invasive compared to bone augmentation procedures.

The procedure begins with a surgical impression of the jawbone. This is used to create a custom-fit metal frame, which is then surgically placed on top of the jawbone, under the gum. The frame's posts protrude through the gums to hold the prosthetic teeth.

Multiple Tooth Dental Implants


Multiple tooth dental implants are used to replace several missing teeth. There are different configurations for multiple tooth replacements, depending on the number of missing teeth and their location.

Implant-Supported Dental Bridges


An implant-supported dental bridge is an excellent solution for replacing multiple adjacent missing teeth. Instead of using natural teeth as anchors, this type of bridge is supported by dental implants.

Implant-supported dental bridges provide more stability than traditional dental bridges. They also prevent bone loss by stimulating the jawbone, and provide a greater level of longevity and security than traditional dental bridges.

The procedure for implant-supported dental bridges begins with detailed imaging and planning. Titanium posts are inserted into the jawbone and time is allowed for osseointegration. Once osseointegration is complete, the custom-made dental bridge is attached to the implants.

All-on-4 and All-on-6 Implants


Full arch dental implants, also known as All-on-4 and All-on-6, are used for patients who have lost all or most of their teeth in one arch (upper or lower jaw). These methods involve placing four or six dental implants strategically in the jawbone to support a full arch of prosthetic teeth.

This method allows for full-arch restoration, replacing an entire set of teeth with minimal dental implants. This often allows for the placement of a temporary prosthesis on the same day.

Because this method reduces the number of dental implants needed, it is also more cost-effective. The procedure begins with comprehensive assessment and planning. Four or six dental implants are then placed in the jawbone, possibly followed by a temporary set of teeth. After healing, a permanent set of teeth is attached.

Mini Dental Implants


Mini dental implants are smaller in diameter than standard dental implants and are often used in situations where space is limited or the bone density is insufficient for regular dental implants. They are less invasive and are a good option for stabilizing dentures.

The smaller size of mini dental implants means a less invasive procedure. They also have a shorter healing time and are often less expensive compared to traditional dental implants.

Zygomatic Implants


Zygomatic dental implants are used for patients with severe bone loss in the upper jaw. Instead of being anchored in the jawbone, these longer dental implants are anchored in the zygomatic bone (cheekbone).
These dental implants eliminate the need for bone grafting in severe cases. They also allow for the immediate placement of a temporary prosthesis and provide a stable and secure base for prosthetic teeth.

Comparing Dental Implant Options


When considering dental implants, we recommend comparing different options based on individual needs, health conditions, and budget. Single tooth dental implants are ideal for replacing individual teeth, while implant-supported dental bridges and full-arch dental implants are suitable for multiple missing teeth. Mini dental implants and zygomatic dental implants offer solutions for patients with specific anatomical or health challenges.

Contact us today at Everwell Dentistry for a consultation, so we can find out which type of dental implants will work best for you!
The first step to a healthy beautiful smile is to schedule an appointment.
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