What is Bone Grafting and What Does it Mean to Cosmetic Dentistry?
To many people, bone grafting may sound like a very serious procedure, something that’s typically done in emergency situations in a hospital. Actually, while it can be scary to hear about it, it is nothing for anyone to worry about. When it comes to cosmetic dentistry, bone grafting is a non-emergency procedure only done in certain situations to correct issues with the jawbone. This procedure is usually considered when patients are considering having a dental implant done and it is only done when needed to provide a more secure base for the implant.
Want to learn more about bone grafting and how it can improve the health of your jawbone? All of us at Midtown Dental care about your health and will do everything we can to get you there, call us today for an evaluation.
The Difference between Dental Implants and Dentures
In the past, the main choice for replacing lost teeth has been partials or dentures, molded prosthetics that were fitted and shaped to the gums of a patient’s mouth. While it would take time to achieve a comfortable fit, dentures and partials were the options of choice to maintain your health when you were suffering from missing teeth.
Over time, dental implants were developed, in the beginning with individual manufactured teeth that could be fitted inside the gum line after drilling into the jawbone for anchoring. To be certain that any tooth implant will be a success; it requires a sturdy and stable jawbone and your dentist will determine the state of yours during the initial visit.
When a Bone Graft Becomes Necessary
Not everyone that is a candidate for dental implants will require an additional bone graft to ensure its success. It is only done if needed, and only to form a more stable base for the implants. Your dentist will take X-ray pictures of your jawbone as a precaution, and examine it closely to determine whether anything will need to be done to improve the quality of your jawbone.
Your past dental history is important. Gum infections, abscesses and tooth extractions can all cause spots of erosion in your jawbone. If those areas of erosion are large enough, they can affect the stability of it, and may not be enough to support a major implant of artificial teeth. If you think about it, your jaws exert an extreme amount of pressure every time they bite down, and for any implants to be a success, they need a strong base to protect them.
How the Procedure Works
To perform a successful bone grafting within your jawbone, your dentist must add new bone to any area that has been weakened. This will require either bone that has been extracted from another part of your body, like your hip, or a carefully selected donor bone from the bone bank. Rejection rates today are quite small and it will only take a few months for the added bone to graft itself, and grow. Once healed, the dental implants will be done, safely.