When tooth loss occurs, it is sometimes necessary to install dental implants as part of the process for replacing the missing teeth; however, a person may have a jawbone that is too weak to properly support dental implants. In these situations, a bone grafting procedure may be required to install dental implants.
A bone grafting procedure involves supplementing the existing jawbone with additional bone material. This adds to the overall strength of the jawbone so it can adequately support dental implants. Once the procedure is complete, the graft will stimulate new bone growth, which further strengthens the bone.
In the past, bone grafting procedures usually involved harvesting a bone from a separate part of the body. Today, this step can be skipped by using an artificial bone-like material. Depending upon the intensity of the bone graft, you may be able to have dental implants installed at the same time as the bone grafting procedure. Other times, it is necessary to wait for the jawbone to strengthen and heal before dental implants can be installed. In some cases, this process can take several months.
The best way to prevent the need for a bone grafting procedure is to ensure that the jawbone remains strong and healthy. This can be done by preventing tooth loss with good oral hygiene and proper brushing and flossing techniques. If tooth loss does occur, the missing teeth should be replaced as quickly as possible. When tooth loss happens, the jawbone tends to weaken over time due to atrophy. This means that a bone grafting procedure is more likely to be needed the longer a person waits to replace lost teeth.
If you require a bone grafting procedure to install dental implants and you would like to learn more about your possible options for treatment, please contact our office to set up a consultation. You may call us at (201) 384-0100 to schedule an appointment.