Reviewed by Dr. Brent Boyse, DDS

If you are reading this blog, chances are you’ve been told you need a dental implant. You know that implants are a significant investment, so you want to make sure you have all the info you need before proceeding with the surgery.

One question you might have is: What are the 3 types of dental implants?

In this blog, we answer that question and explain the advantages of each type of implant. Our goal is to equip you with the information you need to feel confident making this investment in your oral health.

The 3 types of implants we’ll talk about are: endosteal, subperiosteal, and zygomatic. Let’s get started!

Table of Contents

Endosteal Implants: The Most Common Choice

Endosteal implants are the most frequently used type and are an excellent option for patients with healthy jawbones. The process involves inserting a titanium post into the jawbone, which acts as an artificial tooth root. After the healing period, during which the post fuses with the bone tissue, a replacement tooth or an implant-supported bridge is attached to the post.

Key Points:

  • Materials used: Typically made from titanium, mimicking the function and feel of natural teeth roots.
  • Ideal for: Patients with a strong bone structure who do not require bone grafting.
  • Healing time: The healing process can take several months, allowing for a strong bond before adding the artificial teeth.

Subperiosteal Implants: An Alternative to Bone Grafting

Unlike endosteal implants that require a healthy jawbone for insertion, subperiosteal implants rest on top of the gum tissue but still under the gum line. This type of implant is mounted on a metal frame placed beneath the gum tissue, with the metal post protruding through the gum to hold the dental restoration. Subperiosteal implants are an ideal option for patients who do not have enough natural bone and wish to avoid bone augmentation procedures.

Key Points:

  • Placement: On top of the jawbone, under the gum tissue.
  • Suitability: Best for patients with insufficient bone height or who prefer not to undergo bone grafts.
  • Procedure: Less invasive than endosteal implants, often with a shorter healing time.

Zygomatic Implants: The Solution for Severe Jawbone Loss

Zygomatic implants offer a solution for patients with significant bone loss who cannot undergo traditional implant procedures without extensive grafting. This type of implant is anchored in the zygoma, or cheekbone, rather than the jawbone. Due to the complexity and specialized nature of the zygomatic implant procedure, it isn’t performed very often and requires an experienced oral surgeon.

Key Points:

  • Location: Anchored in the cheekbone.
  • Indicated for: Patients with severe jawbone loss or deficiency.
  • Considerations: More complex surgery but provides a permanent solution where other implants might not be viable.

Bone Grafting: The Solution For Bone Loss

Bone grafting is a procedure used to increase bone mass in the jaw, making it possible for patients who have experienced bone loss to qualify for endosteal implants. 

This technique involves taking a section of bone from another part of the patient’s body or using a special bone grafting material to fuse with the existing jawbone, creating a more solid foundation for future implants.

Key Points:

  • Purpose: To rebuild or enhance jawbone density, allowing for the placement of endosteal implants.
  • Advantages: It opens up the possibility for a broader range of patients to receive the more traditional and widely preferred endosteal implants.
  • Process: Though it involves a separate procedure and an additional healing period, bone grafting can significantly improve the outcome of dental implants by providing a strong and stable base for the implant.

Bone grafting is often preferred over subperiosteal and zygomatic implants because it allows for the use of endosteal implants, which have a higher success rate and are more akin to natural tooth roots in function and feel.

For more information on bone grafting, read Why You Might Need a Bone Graft For Dental Implants. 

What Type Is Right for You?

The best way to determine which type of dental implant is right for you is to consult with an experienced oral surgeon. They will evaluate your individual case and provide expert recommendations on the best course of action.

Here at AZ Max Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons, we have a team of skilled professionals who specialize in dental implant surgery and can guide you through the process with care and expertise.  Our surgeons have the skills and experience to handle complex cases that other providers might not be equipped for.

Don’t take our word for it! Here is what our patients have to say:

“Dr. Boyse is the best there is! I can’t say enough great things about our experience with him and his office staff! I highly recommend him for any precision dental work or surgery you need done. You’ll be glad you chose AZMAX!”

“Went in to have a tooth extracted and bone graft for a implant a two step procedure with Dr Romney. Dr Romney and staff was very professional. From front desk to back office. No unnecessary chit chat (I am not big on chit chat). Every step of procedure was explained, both times. All my questions answered. Throughout procedure I was asked if I was in pain or uncomfortable. After care was explained in detail and I was sent on my way with all the information I needed to care for myself.”

“Dr Austin is extremely knowledgeable excellent bedside manners. I’m very impressed with the outcome of my bone graft. Next step will be my implants. The staff is extremely helpful and welcoming. My only issue is with the billing. I was informed first that my insurance was covering a big portion for my post then I was told my insurance didn’t cover anything. That was a surprise for me.”

Trust AZ Max With Your Dental Implant Needs

Our mission is to provide our patients with the highest quality surgical care possible. We believe that every patient deserves personal attention and compassion, and we work hard to ensure that each one feels comfortable and confident with their treatment plan. We’re committed to providing our patients with the best possible experience, from start to finish.

If you’re considering dental implants, call or text (480) 830-5866 to book a free dental implant consultation. We have 5 locations to serve you better: Mesa, North Mesa, Queen Creek, Show Low and Tempe.

If you are searching for ‘dental implants near me,’ we can help. Book your free dental implant consultation today!