When you visit Gentle Care Dentists for a dental implant or another type of oral surgery, our dentists may recommend a bone graft procedure if they believe your jaw is too soft or too thin to keep the implant in place. Some people don’t have enough healthy bone in their jaw to support dental implants, but this is a fairly common problem. Natural bone insufficiency can be caused by several things, including:
- Gum disease
- Tooth development defects
- An injury or trauma to the face
- Wearing dentures for a long time
- Dental cavities and infection
- And more!
Luckily, progressive bone loss isn’t inevitable if you lose a tooth due to trauma or gum disease. Our dentists can perform bone grafting procedures using materials that stimulate new bone growth directly at the missing tooth site. If your bone graft is placed immediately after a tooth extraction, it can prevent bone loss in the future.
Bone Grafting & Augmentation in Arlington
At Gentle Care Dentists in Arlington, we’re proud to offer a variety of bone graft and dental augmentation services throughout Virginia. Bone augmentation is a term used to describe a variety of procedures used to build bone so that dental implants can be placed. Most of these procedures require grafting bone, or adding bone or bone-like materials to the jaw. For some dental patients, the graft can be your own bone or it can be a processed bone that is obtained from a cadaver. The amount of time the integration takes will vary depending on the location of the graft and the density of the bone, but your dental professional will be able to give you a good idea of this.
Sinus Lift or Sinus Augmentation
A sinus lift is a bone augmentation procedure for patients who have insufficient natural bone in the area of their dental implant. Most people who qualify for this procedure have missing upper back teeth, which are among the most difficult to restore. When the back teeth in the upper jaw are missing or knocked out, the sinus cavity becomes larger as the natural bone starts to deteriorate. This dental procedure involves involves the addition of bone below the sinus, so that one or more implants can be placed. Once the bone has been given time to develop (this can take anywhere from four to 12 months), dental implants can be placed.
If your jaw isn’t wide enough to support dental implants, a ridge expansion or modification may be recommended for you. In this dental procedure, a bone graft material can be added to a small ridge or space in your mouth that is created along the top of your jaw. In certain situations, implants can be placed shortly after your ridge expansion, while others require you to wait four to 12 months to ensure complete healing. Like all bone grafting procedures, ridge expansion helps ensure a strong foundation and lifespan for your new teeth.
If you feel you or a loved one may benefit from bone grafting or bone augmentation, contact the team of dentists at Gentle Care Dentists today!