When a dental implant needs to go into a narrow edentulous space, a 3.0 mm implant might be the perfect solution. 3.0 mm implants are offered by several companies, including Nobel Biocare™, Straumann®, Dentsply Sirona, BioHorizons®, and many others. However, there are limitations to these implants. Here is what you need to consider when working a 3.0 mm implant into a treatment plan.

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Limited Positions

The first and perhaps most important limitation is that all 3.0 mm implants on the market are only indicated for maxillary lateral incisors and mandibular central and lateral incisors. Placing a 3.0 mm implant in any other position may void the implant warranty.

The good news is there are some options available for other positions with limited space. For example, at just 3.1 mm, the Zimmer Biomet Eztetic™ implant is indicated for all positions except the molars. Unfortunately, custom abutments are not available for the Eztetic implant, which can be a significant drawback.

Indications for the 3.0 mm implant
Indications for the 3.1 mmD Zimmer Biomet Eztetic implant

Limited to Non-Splinted Single Units

 Some manufacturers restrict 3.0 mm implants to non-splinted single units. This is the case for both Straumann and Nobel Biocare.

Limited Restorative Components

Finally, the 3.0 mm implants offer a smaller selection of restorative components.

  • UCLA abutments are not available for the Astra and Straumann systems. This means that labs cannot fabricate traditional screw-retained crowns or cast gold abutments for these implants. However, it is still possible to do screwmentable style crowns.
  • Since these implants are used in the esthetic zone, zirconia abutments are often requested, but they aren’t available for most systems.
  • Although Straumann and BioHorizons do offer zirconia abutments, the minimum thickness requirements of those abutments often make them too large to fit in the available space.
  • Both stock and custom titanium abutments are available for all the 3.0 mm implants. However, there are no custom abutments currently available for the Zimmer Biomet 3.1 mmD Eztetic implants.

As you can see, it is important to keep these limitations in mind when you consider a 3.0 mm implant as part of your patient’s treatment plan. It will be important to determine the desired restorative outcome before implant selection.

If you have any questions about a dental implant restoration and the many options available, feel free to call us at 800.445.5941 or email implants@obriendentallab.com. We’re always happy to review treatment plans with you so that you can determine the best course of action for your patient.

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