Unfortunately any people have a misconception of mini implants. They believe it is a cheap alternative to conventional standard size implants. Actually they are just another tool we can use to provide people with a solution to conventional full Dentures.
Mini implants are generally smaller than the smallest implant; less than 3mm diameter. They are one single piece and used in area of minimal bone.
The size difference is obvious and you can see the one piece already has the attachment that sticks out above the gums. We generally use these implants for patients that want a stable denture but have minimal bone. They wish for something removable that is easy to clean and snaps in and out.
This is an example of 4 mini implants and the associated attachments that allow the denture to snap in. It holds really tight and we have several levels of holding power .
Here is an actual case:
We generally like to use standard size implants whenever possible. It makes sense to use the widest and longest implant we can in order to engage the most bone and a stronger implant. In the upper arch we therefore tend to use full size implants even for these snap in over dentures since the upper bone is not as dense and strong as the jawbone. Here is an example:
Similar to the mini implants, the attachments placed in the denture grab the attachments on the implant. Not only does this provide a more stable denture, but it eliminates the palatal acrylic that covers the roof of the mouth.