What is Bone Grafting?
When the structure of your jawbone has been compromised due to a tooth extraction, periodontal disease, injury or infection, we can rebuild it with a procedure known as bone grafting.
Bone grafting can increase the height or width of the jawbone and fill in voids and defects in the bone to prepare it for dental restorations. There are essentially two basic ways in which bone grafting can positively impact the health and stability of the teeth:
- Stabilization – Bone grafting stabilizes and helps restore the jaw foundation for restorative or implant surgery. Deformities can also be corrected and the restructuring of the bone can provide added support.
- Preservation (socket augmentation) – Bone grafting can be used to limit or prevent bone recession following a tooth extraction, periodontal disease, or other invasive processes.
What Does Bone Grafting Involve?
Initially, we will do a thorough examination of the affected area in order to assess the general condition of your teeth and gums. We may take a panoramic x-ray in order to assess the precise depth and width of the existing bone. On occasion, we may also need to get a CAT scan of the area to determine the bone volume and condition.
Depending on our findings, we will determine the best type of graft for your particular condition. There are two main types of bone grafts:
- Autogenous Bone Graft – Harvested from the patient’s own body (usually from the posterior part of the lower jaw or the chin). This method is usually preferred because it produces the most predictable results.
- Allograft Bone Graft – Synthetic bone or cadaver bone is used in this type of graft.
The bone grafting process can often take several (4-6) months to complete. Bone is grafted to the affected site. This new bone will fuse with the existing bone and over time cause firm adhesion and cell growth. The greater bone mass will help support and anchor future dental implants.
The surgery can be comfortably performed under IV sedation in our office surgery center and does not require an overnight stay. We will prescribe medications to take after the surgery to help manage discomfort, swelling and infection.
If you have any questions regarding bone grafting or think you would benefit from having a bone grafting procedure, please contact us today!