Oral Surgery, Bone Grafting, Dental Implants
Tooth loss is a serious problem that can make it difficult to speak clearly, chew effectively, and feel good about your appearance. Missing teeth can also lead to bone loss in the jaw, causing other teeth to shift, increasing your risk of tooth decay and periodontal disease, and changing your natural facial shape.
If you’re ready to restore a missing tooth, our oral surgery specialists can help. Using a dental implant and bone grafting if necessary, we can restore your tooth, improve your oral health, and increase your long-term quality of life.
How Do Dental Implants Work?
When you want a permanent, natural-looking solution to missing teeth, dental implants are the best treatment available.
A dental implant is a biocompatible titanium post your oral surgery specialist places in the jawbone. As the tissue heals, it fuses to the post. This process stimulates new bone growth, which helps maintain your natural face shape and promotes good oral health.
After a few months of healing, you’ll return to our oral surgery office so that we can place a dental crown on top. This restoration completes the tooth and allows it to function normally again.
Why Do I Need Bone Grafting?
For a dental implant to be successful, a certain amount of bone must exist in the jaw to completely surround the implant. The bone gives the dental implant stability and strength to support the forces of chewing.
In certain situations, you may not have enough bone where the tooth used to be, either due to genetics or gradual bone reabsorption that occurs when a tooth is missing. However, our oral surgery specialists can add bone to the area in a procedure called bone grafting.
What Is the Bone Grafting Process?
When you meet with our oral surgery specialist about dental implant treatment, we will use imaging diagnostics to determine how much bone you have in your jaw. If you lack enough bone to support an implant, we will discuss a bone grafting treatment plan with you.
In the bone grafting procedure, your oral surgery specialist will add special bone grafting material to your jawbone. If the amount of bone needed is minor, we may be able to place the dental implant in the same procedure. If not, you’ll return to our oral surgery office in a few months, after the area has time to heal.
The timing of placing the dental implant after the bone grafting is important to avoid bone reabsorption, and your oral surgery specialist will schedule your dental implant procedure with that in mind.
Who Is a Good Candidate for Bone Grafting?
While dental implants are fast becoming the treatment of choice for replacing missing teeth, some patients may not be good candidates for either implants or bone grafting. In these cases, we may recommend a dental bridge or another restoration treatment.
The best way to find out if you’re a good candidate for bone grafting or dental implants is to visit our oral surgery office for a tooth replacement evaluation. Call to schedule an appointment today!