Bone grafting is one of the processes that go hand in hand with dental implants, but many people don’t know much about what they are. In this article, we shall be taking a look at what bone grafting is and what significance it has on dental implants.
What is Dental Bone Grafting?
This is a surgical procedure carried out to rebuild or repair the jawbone (in preparation for an implant) through the transplantation of bone tissue. A bone graft is essentially like spackling (filling) a hole, and the spackle, in this case, is made from bone partials or particles. These bone partials go into the hole left behind after tooth extraction.
The hole is then covered by a membrane (sterile bandage) and the bone partials are dissolved by the body in order to integrate into the patient’s own bone. A bone graft serves as a space maintainer while a patient heals from an extraction. It ensures that there is no loss of bone density which could prevent the successful placement of a dental implant.
Why the Jawbone Loses Density in the First Place
Loss of jawbone density usually occurs as a result of resorption following teeth loss. In fact, up to 25 percent of jawbone density can be lost within the first year of teeth loss and it will only continue from there. This loss of density occurs because of the absence of stimulation from teeth and roots.
The body also begins to leach calcium from the jaw for use in other parts since there are no teeth or roots present. This process is known as resorption and it can be prevented if you visit your dentist immediately after tooth loss for treatment.
Apart from resorption, periodontal disease, injury, decay, development defects and infections can also lead to the loss of jawbone density and like resorption, these issues can be mitigated with regular visits to the dentist for preventative care.
When Bone Grafting is Necessary for Dental Implants
A bone graft is typically required for a dental implant when a patient has lost bone density and their jawbone is no longer thick enough to successfully hold the implant. During a dental implant procedure, the dentist surgically places a small titanium post under the gums and secures it to the jawbone. If you are looking for the best implants near you, then Google something like “dental implants Sutton.” This means that in order to support the post, your jawbone will need to be dense enough. In a situation where your jawbone isn’t enough, a bone graft will help increase its density and make it easier for the titanium post to fit perfectly in place. To find the best dental service in your area, it is best to Google something like “dental implants Sutton.”
Whose Bone is Used for a Bone Graft?
A bone graft can be carried out using either cadaver bones (which will dissolve and integrate with your own bone), processed bones or your own bone. There are also newer technologies available that transform cells into bones, but they may not be suitable for everybody.
The Bone Grafting Procedure
Before the procedure, your dentist will need to take images (CT scans) of your jawbone to help them create a plan for augmenting it. You will also need to make a decision between using bone from your body or processed bone.
During the procedure, you will most likely be put to sleep. The areas where the graft will take place (gums and location of the bone partials) will also be numbed with anesthesia. The dentist will then proceed to make an incision in your gum tissue, creating a flap to make the bone visible. This will help them to identify how much bone needs to be placed.
During this time, the bone partials will also be extracted and anchored to your jawbone using a screw (titanium). A membrane material will be placed around the bone graft before the area is sutured and closed.
Recovery Time for Bone Grafting
Following a bone grafting procedure, you will need to wait for some months (6-9 months) for your jawbone to fuse with the bone partials or for your body to build new bone around the grafting material. Once this process is complete, the dental implants can now be securely placed.
Soreness is to be expected immediately after your bone grafting procedure. Using ice packs and painkillers like Ibuprofen can help combat this. Your dentist may also prescribe some antibiotics and antibacterial mouthwash for you. This is to prevent an infection. Be sure to keep pressure off the area and eat carefully and slowly for the first few weeks after the procedure.
Bone grafting is an important procedure that helps increase jawbone density following tooth loss. It helps reduce or prevent resorption and allows for the successful placement of dental implants. The procedure is also very safe, and it ensures that dental implants are much more secure and stable, which ultimately means that they will last longer.