Bone grafts are a common surgical procedure which is carried out by specialist oral surgeons throughout the world. These types of procedures are necessary when there isn't enough bone to complete a dental implant or other necessary procedure.
When a patient has a missing tooth, the jaw bone deteriorates over time, this is called resorption. This leaves the bone too narrow, not deep enough or not strong enough to manage a dental implant. This means that a bone needs to be taken from another part of the body and put in place to make the area strong enough to withstand an implant and keep it in place.
There are two types of bone grafts that take place in dental surgery, minor and major treatments. Both require the procedure being carried out by an oral surgeon who has experience with this type of complex treatment.
It's important to understand that the teeth and jawbone work in unison, it is important for these two parts of your mouth to work well together to ensure good oral health.
During the procedure oral surgeons either take part of one of your own bones or use a synthetic bone which is placed over the tooth socket. It is then covered with gum tissue and left to heal.
This is a complicated procedure which is carried out under local anesthetic, which numbs the area, ensuring no discomfort as the procedure is performed. It is a safe and successful procedure which is carried out by oral surgeons on a daily basis. Once the procedure is completed, the patient will require antibiotics, avoiding infection.
After you have had a dental bone graft, you will need to keep clear of certain foods for a specific period of time. This is to reduce any strain placed on your new bone. The dentist will discuss this with you in more detail in terms of what you are and are not allowed along with how long you are to refrain from eating these specific foods.
Over and above adding bone to a tooth socket, there are other forms of bone grafts which take place, depending on where you need additional bone.
When you are missing upper back teeth, the sinus cavity can enlarge and bone degeneration can occur. With this type of bone graft, new bone is placed just below the sinus to make the area secure enough to hold a dental implant. This type of procedure can take anywhere up to one year to heal, but has absolutely no impact on speech, which is one thing many patients are worried about.
In some cases another major bone graft surgery is required. This is when the jaw isn't wide enough to hold the implants. This is called ridge expansion and is when bone is added along the top of the jaw, this is used to strengthen the foundation and ensure the jaw is durable and strong enough to hold the implant.
Implants are when a titanium rod is drilled into the jaw bone. It is essential the bone is strong and big enough to hold the rod in place. A crown is then placed over the rod to create a new tooth which is as strong and durable as a natural tooth, enabling you to chew and eat as normal.
When you choose dental implants you will have an initial consultation where x-rays are taken, this will determine if any bone grafts are necessary to complete the procedure. This will then be discussed with you in detail, so you know exactly what to expect.
Your Fairhope Al dentist is the best person to know if you are a candidate for a bone graft, also the person to talk to about payment options to make your visit as pleasant as possible.