Bone Grafts & Augmentation

Bone grafts and bone augmentation procedures are used to prepare an area of the jaw bone to receive a dental implant. Bone grafting is especially important immediately after a tooth is removed to preserve an adequate amount of bone and prevent bone shrinkage. The goal is to maintain enough bone in the area to adequately support and stabilize the implant. Thus, this is known as a bone preservation procedure.

If bone loss has already occurred because the tooth was removed in the past, then the area may need to undergo guided bone regeneration instead. In this case, bone grafts and gum grafts may both be needed in order to generate enough new tissue in the area for proper implant support. 

When Should Bone Grafting Be Performed

In most instances, bone preservation has better and more predictable outcomes than guided bone regeneration. This is why bone grafting should be performed at the time of tooth extraction if you are at all considering a dental implant as a tooth replacement option. Skipping the bone graft may mean more extensive surgeries and more costs down the line. 

What Are Some of the Benefits of Bone Grafting?

If you’re considering dental implants, but don’t have enough bone in your jaw to support the implant, or if you’ve had bone loss due to periodontal disease or tooth loss, a bone graft might be right for you. A bone graft rebuilds your jawbone and creates a stable foundation for dental implants. It can also prevent further bone loss, preserve your facial structure, and improve candidacy for dental implants by making it more likely that the implants will be successful. Most people are good candidates for a bone graft, which is safe and effective.

What Are Some of the Causes for Jawbone Bone Loss?

Tooth loss and missing teeth –  can lead to bone deterioration over time. When there are no teeth there to support and stimulate the jawbone, it begins to break down. Bone deterioration tends to start within the first 18 months of tooth loss, so procedures like dental implants are critical to maintaining bone density.

Periodontal disease – Periodontal gum disease can also be a major contributor to bone deterioration. In other words, if you’re losing bone in your jaw, it might be because of an infection in your gums. This disease can also coincide with tooth loss, as the bone starts to lose density.

Dentures – Dentures have been around for ages, but that doesn’t mean they’re perfect. If you wear your removable dentures for a long time, it can lead to bone density loss as your jaw is no longer stimulated by the presence of teeth, as a result, it becomes less stimulated and starts to deteriorate over time.

Is Bone Grafting Painful?

Bone grafting and augmentation procedures are performed while the patient is numb. Another benefit of receiving a bone graft at the same time the tooth is removed is that you won’t need to be numb a second time. 

At Sloan Creek Dental, we have many options to keep you comfortable during your appointment including nitrous oxide (or laughing gas), oral conscious sedation, and IV sedation. We will consider each patient’s individual needs while keeping patient comfort at the top of our priorities.