I have looked into implants a few years ago to support my upper dentures and was told that I would need bone grafting to support the implants in my upper front teeth. I lost my upper front teeth due to an accident when I was in high school. In any case, the cost was prohibitive at that time. I am 64 years old, and have just been told by a dentist that I may be a candidate for mini-implants, which are less expensive than bone grafting + regular implants. Now, I am very confused as to what to do. I actually have a bit more money now, and I would like to have my teeth fixed (implants to hold upper denture) in the right way. What is your advice re: bone grafting + regular implants v.s. mini implants? Thanks.
Firstly, I should mention that it is very important that before making a decision regarding one treatment or another, a dental 3D CT scan (cone beam) needs to be taken. This will permit the dental surgeon to determine the width of your bone as well as the best placement and type of implants that may serve you well.
With regards to your specific situation, you describe losing your front teeth in an accident and to secure your upper denture. While the bone in that area may be narrow and not suitable for implants without some sort of augmentation procedure, that is usually not the location for implants when helping to secure a denture. Rather, it is preferable to insert implants in the canine or first premolar areas (which are toward the corner of your lips). You should discuss the positioning of your implants with your specialist.
With respect mini implants vs regular implants, it is difficult to give a definitive answer without more information. Mini-implants, when placed judiciously work well. However, you would need more information before a decision is made. As mentioned previously, I highly recommend a Cone Beam CT in order to determine the best treatment plan.