Over a period of time, the jawbone associated with missing teeth deteriorates and shrinks. 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 immediate candidates for placement of dental implants. They will require adjunctive procedures to restore the lost bone.
With bone grafting, we now have the opportunity to not only replace bone where it is missing, but also the ability to promote new bone growth in that location! This not only gives us the opportunity to place implants of proper length and width, it also gives us a chance to restore functionality and esthetic appearance. Bone grafting utilizes various materials of human, animal and synthetic origin that will integrate with your own bone tissue over time.
Bone grafting may be performed in the following situations:
This procedure is performed at the time of tooth extraction in order to preserve and/or repair the jawbone in preparation for future implant placement. This is the most predictable way to ensure you will have the adequate foundation for your dental implants.
The alveolar ridge of the jaw is the bone that surrounds the roots of teeth. When a tooth is removed, an empty socket is left in the alveolar ridge bone. Usually this empty socket will heal on its own, filling with bone and tissue. Sometimes the bone is unable to fully heal on its own. The previous height and width of the alveolar ridge will continue to deteriorate. Ridge augmentation is performed to rebuild the alveolar ridge height and width and may be required to accommodate dental implant placement and/or for esthetic reasons.
The maxillary sinuses are located behind the cheeks and on top of the upper teeth. These sinuses are empty, air-filled spaces. Sometimes, the roots of the upper molar teeth extend up into the maxillary sinuses. When these upper teeth are removed, there is often just a thin wall of bone separating the maxillary sinus and the mouth. Dental implants need bone to hold them in place. When the sinus border is too close to the alveolar ridge where dental implants will be placed, a sinus augmentation or sinus lift procedure is indicated to increase the area of supporting bone by adding the bone graft at the level of the sinus floor. In certain cases, this procedure may be performed in conjunction with the dental implant placement.
The sinus grafting makes it possible for many patients to have dental implants when years ago there was no other option besides wearing loose dentures.
If you have any questions about the types of services we provide that you would like answered before you visit, please feel free to contact us. The San Francisco Center for Periodontics and Dental Implants team looks forward to meeting you and putting you on the path to the perfect smile.