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What Dental Implant Screwdriver Fits My Tooth?

What dental implant screwdriver do I use?dental implant drivers Burbank ramsey amin

Unfortunately dental implant abutment screws come in all different shapes and sizes. Because of that, there are many, many different screws that hold them together. There are also so many different instrument adapters to tighten and loosen dental implant components.

It would be nice if there was a universally accepted system for dental implants so that if a patient moves from France to Burbank, California there would be no problem in finding a dentist that could work on the implant.

implant driver --ramsey amin dds-_l

For most modern, well done dental implants, screw loosening is a thing of the past. But what is increasingly common is using the same implant for another crown or bridge. You may have had for a single tooth crown dental implant to later be used as a connecter to a bridge if you lost a tooth behind or in front of it.

Dental implant screwdrivers come in all shapes and sizes. We have hexes, slots, torques, and many other types. What size is it? Is it a size .035 ,.048 or is it .050 or .062 or .017 slot? What is the shaft length? Is the abutment torqued with a nut driver because it is a solid abutment without a hole? When you see all these tiny parts in a box they all look alike! Yikes!

The list goes on and on.

The problem is often a lack of organization in an average general dental office. The dentist perhaps does not practice implant dentistry often and is just handed a box of screwdrivers and left to figure it out until something fits. If it “kind of fits” but if it doesn’t fit perfectly the screw gets stripped!! The screwdriver also gets rounded out on the corners. After the stripped screwdriver gets sterilized it gets used on another patient and potentially can strip that screw too.

Worse yet, the implant doesn’t get tightened down fully but it is believed that it is screwed down all the way. What ends up happening is the dental implant crown or bridge becomes loose on the abutment level. The crown usually doesn’t come out when that happens, it’s just wobbles and causes gum irritation, pain and bone loss if it is left for too long.

A loose screw will also fracture leaving the broken part stuck inside. It isn’t a lot of fun to dig out!

I use a variety of dental implant systems. I use a universally accepted internally hexed implant that has a .050 hex screw. This is not a proprietary screw like some other implant systems and will make it easy for you should you have a problem in the future or just need to build on your dental implant. An example of building on your dental implant would be a patient that has 4 front teeth implants and they are losing all of their back teeth. The back teeth could be extracted, dental implants placed and a Prettau full arch zirconia screw retained bridge could be connected to the new and old implants.

I find that the wrong screwdriver problem happens more often when the surgical part of the dental implant is being done by one person, and the crown bridge or implant overdenture is being done by another dentist. This leads to a mismatch of parts sometimes if the dentist team or staff is not well aligned with each other.

These custom angulated abutments I made are held in by screws. IMG_6225 Custom Abutments -Ramsey Amin Burbank
My recommendation would be to just make a note somewhere of the type and style of implant screw you have should you ever need it. If your situation is complex I would highly suggest seeing a dental implant specialist for the best results. Their staff should be equally knowledgeable and are a key part of your implant success!

Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry

9 thoughts on “What Dental Implant Screwdriver Fits My Tooth?

  1. Hi Doc,

    I am a dentist and I have a patient with 6 upper MUA’s and 4 lower MUA’s. The patient would like new upper and lower restorations but I am not sure what components she has in her mouth. Is it possible for you to help me figure out what they may be? I have photos of the MUA’s as well as photos of the screws and X-rays. I was able to remove the screws using an 048 hex screwdriver.



  2. Dear Sir,
    Can you supply a .9 [point nine] hexagon dental screwdriver ?
    I have had 6 implants in my upper jaw and a full dental bridge attachment.
    I cannot find a dentist in the UK who has the screwdrivers to remove my teeth for servicing.
    I had the implants fitted in Spain and I am getting rather concerned that I cannot find anyone to supply me with the equipment that I need.
    Kind regards Kenneth Wheatley

      1. Thanks for replying Ramsey.
        The make is a Microdent implant system 9 mm.hexagon.
        I have been asked by my doctor in the UK to supply this screwdriver. I am getting rather frustrated that no one appears to know where I can buy one in the UK.
        .I may have to try and make one myself, I’m sure it’s not that difficult.
        Regards Kenneth Wheatley

  3. Dear Dr. Amin,

    thank you for riding this post. I lived in a small town with only one dentist. I was having a problem with my implant so I showed him this article.

    He told me he attended one of your lectures many years ago! I will leave his name out of this but he told me he emailed you!

    Thanks for your help. The fact that you answer questions for people around the whole world is really awesome.

    1. Hi Hillary,

      Yes, what a small world! I know your dentist. I coached him on what would be the best way to treat your particular dental implant screw problem.
      Thank you for your very flattering words. I am glad to have helped.

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry

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About Ramsey A. Amin, DDS

Dr. Ramsey Amin has extensive experience in surgical and restorative implant dentistry. As one of only less than 400 Diplomates of the American Board of Oral Implantology/ Implant Dentistry (ABOI/ID) he is considered an expert, and board-certified in dental implants. He is a former instructor at the UCLA School of Dentistry.