Bone Grafting

When it comes to dental restorations such as dental implants and bridge work, many patients may require the assistance of bone grafting to prepare the jaw. The success of a restoration can greatly depend on the width, height, and depth of the jawbone at the site the implant will be placed. Jawbones that have sustained significant damage or have experienced loss and recession can make a poor foundation for the placement of implants. To ensure a restoration surgery is successful, a dentist may suggest bone grafting.
There are several reasons why a patient may need bone grafting. The first is the lasting effects of periodontal disease. Periodontal disease damages the bone of the jaw that supports the natural teeth and restorations. When left untreated, it can become progressively worse and cause teeth to become unstable and loose. Extraction can also result in a loss of 40-60% of the bone over the next three years. This is typically referred to as a bone defect. Injuries and infections can also cause recession of the bone, including physical impact such as a blow to the jaw.
Bone grafting can address bone defects and increase the foundation of the smile. It can improve jaw stabilization, during which the foundation is repaired for the placement of a dental implant, correcting deformities during restructuring. Preservation of the bone is also important when patients have experienced a tooth extraction or have had a severe case of periodontal disease.
To determine if bone grafting is necessary, the dentist will perform an oral evaluation. This may include a CAT scan or X-rays to take a look at the existing bone. The dentist measures the depth and width and determines the bone’s overall condition. Depending on the results of this examination, the dentist may even anesthetize the patient and explore beneath the gum tissue to see what is available for the placement of restorations.

Bone grafting involves several months. The process involves the harvesting of bone from the patient’s own body or with the assistance of a bone bank. This harvested bone is then added to the affected site. During osseointegration, the bone fuses together to stimulate cell growth and provide firm adhesion. This improves bone mass and growth to prepare the smile for the placement of restorations such as dental implants.Bone grafting is often closely associated with dental restorations, such as bridge-work and dental implants. When the jawbone has receded or sustained significant damage, the foundation is unstable and the implant(s) cannot be supported. This is when bone grafting is usually recommended for the ensuing restoration.