Bone Grafting for Implants
Do I have enough bone for dental implants?
After tooth extraction, if the walls of the socket are very thick, they will usually fill naturally with bone in about three to four months. However, the healing process can be unpredictable and may result in inadequate bone for dental implants. When teeth are removed, sometimes a bone graft is placed at the time of tooth extraction to help your body fill in the empty socket with bone. This step helps maintain the width and volume of bone you will need for implant placement several months later.
1. Inadequate Bone
2. Graft Material Placed
3. Implants Placed
There may be inadequate bone for implant placement, especially if your tooth was removed many years ago and your bony ridge is extremely thin. In such cases, a bone graft can be placed over the thin bone and allowed to heal for up around six months. After the graft has fused to your pre-existing bone, the ridge will be re-entered and the implant placed pending adequate healing. Bone grafting is usually a relatively comfortable office procedure. Many different bone-grafting materials are available, including your own bone.
1. Inadequate Bone
2. Graft Material and Implant Placed
You may also need bone grafting if the sinus cavities in your upper jaw are very large, or very low, and extends into the tooth-bearing areas. This often occurs when teeth in the back of a person’s upper jaw have been removed many years before and the amount of bone available for implant placement is limited. A “sinus grafting procedure” is then required. Most often, it is performed in our office often with the use of IV sedation. During this procedure, the membrane that lines the sinus will be located and elevated. Bone will then be added to restore the bone height and ensure that dental implants of an adequate length can be placed. This procedure can sometimes be performed at the time of implant placement.