Rebuild Your Jaw Bone and Restore Your Smile
If we recommend any type of bridgework or dental implants to restore your smile, you may need a bone graft to ensure there is enough bone available to support the tooth restoration. Bone grafting is needed when some of the jaw bone has deteriorated or shrunk. We can determine the level of bone loss with X-rays and can perform a bone graft to repair the jaw and ensure optimal results with your tooth restoration of choice.
Why Do I Have Bone Loss?
There are several reasons why you may experience some degree of bone loss. Some of the common reasons for bone loss and bone volume shrinkage include:
- Gum disease – Advanced stages of periodontal disease break down gum and bone tissue fairly rapidly and the teeth become loose or unstable as a result.
- Tooth extractions – If you have had teeth manually removed, the space may affect surrounding teeth and the jaw bone will start to deteriorate
- Injury or infection in the mouth – Any type of impact to the jaw can cause some degree of bone recession. Infections in the mouth can also end up breaking down the jaw bone over time.
How Bone Grafts Are Performed
The bone grafting procedure may involve obtaining tissue from a tissue bank or transplanting bone from your own body. We will also use special membranes and other materials to ensure the bone regenerates rapidly and heals properly. This is called guided bone regeneration and can be very effective for restoring missing bone tissue.
Sinus Lift Surgery
You may be a candidate for a sinus lift if you do not have enough bone in the upper jaw and need to get dental implants or other tooth restoration procedures in the upper jaw area. This procedure is designed to make room for the additional bone and can be performed by a periodontist or a maxillofacial surgeon.
If you have lost teeth in the upper jaw or have extensive bone loss in the upper jaw because of gum disease, you may need a sinus lift to restore the bone structure.
How a Sinus Lift is Performed
This procedure involves cutting gum tissue around the area where the back teeth to expose the bone. The membrane separating the sinus from the jaw can be pushed up from this space and bone grafting material can be packed into the space. The treatment area is closed with stitches and dental implants can be placed up to nine months later, after the area has completely healed.
Both bone grafting and sinus lift procedures require several months of healing and your recovery time will depend on how much bone was grafted, your overall health, and other factors. We cannot place dental implants until the bone has completely assimilated with existing bone tissue and this can take some time.