The Dental Health Blog is intended to educate and inform, so we would like to offer some information on the various types of dental implants that are available, along with a few recommendations. While by no means is this a comprehensive look at dental implants, as your Littleton area dental implant experts, we hope to be able to present you with the basics, allowing you to inform yourself more fully about your choices and options.

Name Brand Implants vs. Generic Dental Implants

While it has become the norm to accept generic medications for the treatment of a variety of medical conditions in the US today, when it comes to using generic dental implants, we recommend the “brand names”. Although generic implants may offer a less expensive alternative, they may not offer the same level of research, product support, or stability. Beyond these issues, some generic implant designs suffer from fit issues, making them incompatible with other components, and which may increase the risk of complications.

Instead, we are strong advocates of using name brand dental implants instead, such as Nobel Biocare, Straumann, Astra Tech/Dentsply, and Zimmer, for a variety of important reasons:

  • Advanced Research and Development – The dental implant systems from these companies have the most research behind them and have a proven track record of success.
  • Full System Solutions – These companies provide complete implant systems, along with the components needed for almost any clinical situation. They also provide access to parts and pieces in the future, should we need to repair something.
  • Stability and Support – These are stable companies, with a history of service and support, that that will likely be around for many years to come. We have also found that these companies provide excellent product support.

If we take a closer look at the brand name implant companies, listed above, there are a few key similarities and differences.

  • Design Standards – The brand name implant companies make implants of high quality. All dental implants are made of titanium, titanium alloy, or zirconia, with surfaces that are made to be moderately rough, which facilitates integration of the implant in to the jawbone.
  • Variations for increased effectiveness – Variations exist in how the roughness is created, in the protocol for implant placement, and in how the prosthetic parts, such as crowns, bridges, and dentures, are connected to the implants. While many of the variations do not lead to significant differences in outcome generally, each design has certain advantages in particular clinical situations. These variations aid us in the successful placement of your prosthesis. (For example, the design of the NobelActive implant, made by Nobel Biocare, is advantageous for placement in soft bone.)
  • Increased Range of Sizes – The brand name implant companies offer a variety of implant diameters, ranging from 3mm to 6mm, and lengths ranging from 8.5mm to 18mm. Short implants are often considered to be those less than 8.5mm and mini implants are those less that 3mm in diameter. Conventional implants have the best track record for success, and are generally more successful than short or mini implants; however there is mounting evidence that both short and mini implants may be nearly as successful as the conventional in certain circumstances.

For more detailed information about implants, visit our Dental Implants Page.

It is our firm belief that the more choices we have, the better the chance of a positive outcome for you, our dental implant patients. Experience has taught us that the brand name dental implant companies we have partnered with offer us the options we need to be able to provide you with the type and quality of care that has made us your choice for Littleton area prosthetic dentistry for more than 20 years.

If you’ve been considering dental implants, or have more questions about the implant process, the doctors at The Colorado Center for Implant and Prosthetic Dentistry are available to help you determine effective solutions to all of your dental problems. If you would like more information from your Littleton Prosthodontist, please call to make an appointment today.

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