There are different types of dental implants. Some are shaped like tooth roots and are called root forms. Some are thin and long. These are called blade or plate form dental implants. Many times the bone in the posterior jaws melts away and leaves only a thin ridge. A root form implant is too wide to place in this thin bone so blade form implants can be used here. These thin dental implants are often called blades.
Blades are the only dental implants ADA approved for use in tying together natural teeth and dental implants in the construction of dental bridges. It is not recommended to connect root form implants to natural teeth because root form implants do not move while natural teeth do. Plate form implants move and are better suited to connect to moving natural teeth.
A temporary bridge can be constructed and cemented the same day that a blade is placed into the jaw bone. This makes a blade dental implant very attractive because the patient walks out with new teeth immediately. Blade form dental implants are best used to support bridgework connected to natural teeth. Because the neck of a blade form dental implant is thin, it does not make a good single tooth dental implant.