For patients with missing or cracked teeth, dental implants can be an incredibly powerful procedure. Implants are remarkably similar to regular teeth and fuse into your mouth over time for a permanent solution. However, some patients don’t have the proper amount of jawbone required to support the titanium implant and the osseointegration that occurs when the implant is placed. This could be due to a number of factors, including gum disease, injuries, infection, or other causes.
We require that the jawbone is wide and tall enough to support an implant for a long period of time. When patients don’t have enough bone, we perform a procedure called a bone graft, or bone augmentation. Once the graft is completed, we typically wait anywhere from 4-10 months before placing the dental implant.
The bone graft procedure follows a few simple steps:
1. We gather the bone for grafting from a tissue bank or from an area of your own body, such as the chin, hip or tibia.
2. The holes in your bone are filled with the grafting tissue.
3. A special membrane is placed over the graft to protect the graft and encourage bone growth.
4. Once the graft is in place, the gums are stitched back over the graft and covered with a periodontal bandage. The graft is ready to take hold.
We can perform this procedure right inside our office for many patients. We typically give patients antibiotics and pain medication to ensure that we maximize the procedure’s effectiveness. Patients return to the office throughout the healing process to ensure that the graft is healing correctly.
If you have any questions about bone grafting or if you would like to schedule a free consultation, please contact our team or make an appointment. Our incredible staff will give you the best dental care possible.