Over time, the jaw bone associated with missing teeth atrophies or resorbs. This often leaves a condition in which there is poor quality and quantity of bone suitable for placement of dental implants. In these situations, most patients are not candidates for placement of dental implants.
Surgeons trained in bone regeneration have the ability to grow bone where needed. This not only gives us the opportunity to place implants of proper length and width, it also gives us a chance to restore the aesthetic appearance and functionality. These are some of the types of bone graft procedures:
Sinus lift procedure
This procedure involves elevating the sinus membrane and placing the bone graft onto the sinus floor. This type of procedure is very common and allows implants to be placed in areas where a tooth has been missing for a long time or where the sinus floor has dropped around the roots of the maxillary teeth in an abnormal position.
In severe cases the ridge has resorbed and a bone graft is placed to increase the ridge height and/or width. Typically, these grafts are almost always needed where a tooth has been removed in the past without any grafting of the extraction socket.
When a tooth is removed in a young adult usually the bone fills in the defect quickly and densely. As we age the extraction socket fills very slowly and with bone often not dense enough for future implant stability. In these cases, we advise the patient to have a socket preservation bone graft that will make the bone that fills the socket capable of supporting a strong implant.
These procedures may be performed separately or together, depending upon the individual’s condition at our office in Atlanta, GA.
There are several areas of the body suitable for attaining bone grafts. In the maxillofacial region, bone grafts can be taken from inside the mouth, in the area of the chin or third molar region or in the upper jaw behind the last tooth. Normally we are able to use bone supplied by surgical supply houses so that an additional surgical site is unnecessary. Usually bone used for grafting is mixed with the patient’s own Platelet Rich Plasma which enhances healing by 50% and increases bone density at the site by 60%.