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Designer Smiles
Short Dental Implants

Short Dental Implants

The use of short dental implants has proven achievable in patients who are apprehensive about undergoing augmentation procedures. Several studies have shown that the use of short dental implants is easier to insert into the patient’s posterior (back) regions of the mouth, and a simpler placement method.

The evidence indicates that given the complicated nature of grafting and bone augmentation and success rates seem to be similar as with simpler procedures.

Therefore, according to Chiapasco et al 2009 systemic review “the priority should be given to simpler procedures”.


Implant Length

In general, today less than 10mm is regarded as a short implant. However, we feel it is more appropriate to refer to 8.5mm or less as a short implant, according to recent published literature.

Short implants are preferable choice to bone augmentation (assessment case by case only), since the treatment is faster, and associated with less morbidity and decreased surgical complications and postoperative patient discomfort. We do have more than 5 years of data, but 10-year data is scarce.

Situations that limit placement of longer implants:
  • Maxillary sinus
  • Mandibular canal
  • History of maxillary chronic sinusitis, allergic rhinitis or any pathology (ENT referral will be indicated an overall management)
  • Patients in many ways prefer not to have adjustment surgical procedures for maxillary sinus lift

Advantages of short implants where indicated in reducing additional procedure for grafting:

  • Less surgical procedures
  • Lower costs
  • Fewer complications
  • Quicker rehabilitation time

Implant Width

Wider implants are defined as diameter with 4.5mm or more. Narrow implant is defined with 3.5mm or less. What contributes to the success of short implants?

  • New modified surface texture (increased surface area) to provide faster, predictable osseointegration
  • Surface geometry for better initial bone stability: primary stability
  • Improved surgical techniques maintaining bone vitality such as piezosurgey
  • Smokers always will have problems irrespective of type of implants
  • Although research shows that crown/root ratio is not significant, Dr Nalbandian looks at the occlusion (bite) load distribution to reduce heavy forces by designing the correct bite platform to redistribute load. It helps to have stable bone levels, combined with good oral hygiene and maintenance program.

Contact us today

Please feel free to contact us should you have any queries. Designer Smiles® is a one stop shop for all implant, orthodontics, teeth whitening, surgical and reconstructive (prosthodontic) oral rehabilitation solutions.