What Can You Expect From Bone Grafting for Dental Implants

What Can You Expect From Bone Grafting for Dental Implants

Jun 01, 2022

When you lose teeth, it puts you at a higher risk of developing oral issues like jawbone deterioration, migration of teeth toward endentulous space, facial sagging, teeth crookedness, and oral infections. It’s highly advisable to replace missing teeth as soon as possible.

Dental implants are an excellent, long-term, and safe option. An implant is an artificial tooth placed into the jawbone through surgery to replace a missing tooth. Next, a dental crown is placed over the implant, giving it a natural tooth appearance.

Do you need a Bone Graft?

For successful dental implant surgery, you need to have healthy gums and jawbone. An unhealthy jawbone will likely lead to implant failure and other complications. An unhealthy or diseased jawbone can result from natural aging, missing teeth, oral trauma, and severe periodontal disease.

Fortunately, that doesn’t mean the end of your road. You can still replace your lost teeth with bridges or dentures. Alternately, your dentist can recommend bone grafting to prepare you for successful implant surgery. Let’s learn about bone grafting.

What is Bone Grafting?

Bone grafting is necessary when a patient doesn’t have sufficient jawbone to support a dental implant successfully. The procedure entails repairing and rebuilding the weakened or damaged jawbone through the transplantation of bone tissue. It provides a solid base for a dental implant to attach successfully.

Usually, there are five primary types of bone grafts materials, namely:

  • Autogeneous bone grafts. This bone graft is from the patient’s body. Your oral surgeon can take small tissues from your shin, hip, or chin.
  • Allograft material. These grafts come from a human donor. The graft material treats you thoroughly to make it disease-free and neutral to immune infections.
  • Xenografts. If you can’t obtain graft materials from your body or a human donor, your dentist can use animal bone sources. Cow bones are common materials for bone grafting.
  • Ceramic-based grafts. These graft materials are made from ceramic materials or in combination with other materials like calcium and bioactive glass.
  • Alloplasts. These bone grafts are from hydroxyapatite – a naturally occurring mineral in bone.
    Your dentist will help you determine the best graft material for your procedure.

Bone Grafting Procedure

Before performing a bone graft, your dentist begins by examining your mouth and your CT Scan. Once you establish your candidacy for the treatment, your dentist will help you to choose the bone grafting material.

The dentist typically begins by numbing you to keep you calm and pain-free. Next, the dentist will extract the damaged tooth that requires replacement (if it’s still in the mouth). The dentist will source the bone graft from the chosen location using an autograph. Combining tooth extraction and bone grafting promotes faster healing.

Next, the dentist will clean the area that needs bone grafting. If you had extracted the tooth earlier, the dentist might need to make an incision through the gum tissues to expose the jawbone. Then, they will attach the bone graft material to the bone.

Once the bone graft material is in place, the dentist will stitch the area to promote faster healing. It can take anywhere between 3-6 months for your bone to heal completely. Your dentist will schedule follow-up meetings to check the progress of your jawbone. Once the bone has healed, your dentist can now place a dental implant successfully.

Bone Grafting Aftercare Instructions

Since bone grafting is a surgical, dental treatment, you’re likely to experience a few side effects like minor bleeding, swelling, and pain. Fortunately, your dentist will prescribe some medications to manage these side effects. Antibiotics are vital in preventing infections. You can also use a cold compress to manage pain and swelling.

Similarly, maintain good oral hygiene and habits. Avoid hard, sticky, or spicy food items for the next few days, as they can irritate or disturb the surgical area. Soft foods like eggs, vegetables, yogurt, porridge, and soups are ideal. You should also avoid smoking as it can inhibit healing, leading to infections and other complications. Contact our Seattle dentist if you develop severe side effects after your bone grafting surgery.

Schedule an Appointment Today

Are you interested in dental implants in Seattle, WA, or would you like to learn more about bone grafting? Contact Greenlake Dental to book your appointment.

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