Patients who learn that they need bone grafting prior to dental implant placement may be disappointed at the idea of waiting a longer time for a fully restored smile. However, this procedure is essential for long-term dental implant success in certain circumstances.
Dental implants are unique because they are structurally complete, consisting of both a “root” and a “crown.” This quality of dental implants makes them more stable and durable than conventional tooth replacement appliances. The process of osseointegration, which occurs when bone tissue fuses with the titanium surface of the dental implant, leaves dental implants a permanent fixture in the jaw. This process requires sufficient bone or else the risk of premature implant failure is high.
In planning for dental implant placement, your oral surgeon will first evaluate the quality of the bone at the implant site. Patients may have insufficient bone at the site for a number of reasons. They may have experienced advanced bone loss following tooth loss, or a congenital defect may have left them with minimal bone tissue to begin with. In such cases, bone grafting will be recommended.
When bone grafting is indicated, the oral surgeon will remove bone from a donor site or source and place it at the implant site. Donor tissue can be obtained from elsewhere in the patient’s body, like the chin or hip, or from external sources, such as animals, cadavers or synthetic materials.
After the bone graft is completed, the donor tissue will be incorporated into the jaw. After that process is complete, the surgeon can proceed with dental implant placement, as the bone tissue will be able to sustain osseointegration.
Bone grafting can be instrumental in your long-term dental implant success. If you have questions about the need for this preliminary treatment, we encourage you to call our office and speak to one of our knowledgeable staff members. We are dedicated to your treatment success, and we want you to understand all aspects of the process.