When it comes to replacing missing teeth, dental implants are quickly gaining steam as the most popular solution. These days, dental implants encompass a wide array of different types of solutions. Implants are now being designed to meet a multitude of different needs. There is even a solution known as mini dental implants. At Southern Arizona Periodontics, P.L.C., we offer both of these solutions and can help you to determine the best solution for you.

Size Differences Between Dental Implants and Mini Implants

One of the most noticeable differences between dental implants and mini implants is their size. Of course, this difference is not noticeable once your teeth have been placed. Once the implants have been placed and your teeth secured, there is no telling what type of dental implant has been used, or that implants are there at all. Before their placement, however, dental implants and mini implants are very different. Regular dental implants are between 3 and 6 millimeters in diameter. A mini implant is typically half of this size.

How the Teeth are Attached

With regular dental implants, the teeth are typically attached to the implant posts with screws. After healing, an abutment, or connector, is attached to the implant post at the gums. Then the replacement teeth are attached. When using mini implants, the teeth attach differently. The posts have small balls on the end of them. Your replacement teeth attached to these balls without the need for an abutment.

What They are Used For

Dental implants are used for all kinds of tooth replacement. They can replace individual teeth or multiple teeth. Mini dental implants can also replace teeth in many situations, but they are often recommended when the bone is not dense enough to support a regular implant. They can replace teeth that have been lost in a location too narrow for a regular implant or teeth that are small. Mini implants are also commonly used to help provide stability for a traditional denture in the lower jaw.

Procedure and Recovery

Because mini implants are smaller, surgery is generally less invasive than surgery for regular dental implants. This then results in less discomfort after surgery and a shorter recovery period. You also do not need to worry about having to undergo a bone graft to restore missing bone density because mini implants can be used in areas where there is not as much bone mass.


Mini implants may be more convenient in certain situations, but their smaller size means they are not as strong as standard dental implants. They also do not have the same support from the jawbone that a regular dental implant would have. They can be effective in many situations, but if you grind or clench your teeth, this solution may not be the best option for you.


There is a cost difference between regular dental implants and mini implants. Typically, mini implants do not cost as much. This is because they require less surgery. A faster healing time means that you have fewer follow up appointments. You are also able to avoid a bone graft with mini implants, which means you avoid the additional cost associated with the extra surgery.

If you have suffered tooth loss, you may be considering dental implants as an option. For more information about dental implants and mini implants, contact Southern Arizona Periodontics, P.L.C. at 520-809-7703 today.