Missing teeth over a period of time can cause your jaw bone to atrophy, or resorb. This often results in poor quality and quantity of bone suitable for the placement of dental implants as well as long term shifting of remaining teeth and changes to facial structure. Many patients in these situations are not usually candidates for dental implants unless bone grafting options are considered
Fortunately, today we have the ability to graft bone where it is needed. This not only gives us the opportunity to place implants of proper length and width, but it also gives us a chance to restore functionality and aesthetic appearance.
Major & Minor Bone Grafting
Bone grafting can repair implant sites with inadequate bone structure due to previous extractions, gum disease, or injuries. The bone used is usually your own bone taken as chips or blocks intra orally from the jaw, or if larger amounts of bone are required, the iliac crest (hip) is a common site to harvest bone. Sinus bone grafts are not infrequently performed to replace bone in the posterior upper jaw. In addition, special membranes may be utilized that dissolve under the gum to protect the bone graft, as well as encourage bone regeneration; this is called guided bone regeneration, or guided tissue regeneration. Some types of artificial bone may be used either alone or in combination with your own bone
Major bone grafts are typically performed to repair large defects of the jaws. These defects may arise as a result of traumatic injuries, tumor surgery, or congenital defects. Large defects are repaired using the patient’s own bone which is harvested from a number of different areas depending on the size needed. The skull (cranium), hip (anterior and posterior iliac crest), and lateral knee (tibia), are common donor sites. Major bone grafting procedures are routinely performed in an operating room and require a hospital stay.