Bone grafting is a type of jaw surgery that can restore strength to a weakened jawbone, a condition that is usually the result of tooth loss that has gone untreated. Dr. Andrew R. Glenn, an experienced and highly trained oral surgeon, offers bone grafting at our Lincoln office. Bone grafting can provide a stronger foundation for dental implants to replace lost teeth and improve oral health. To learn more about whether a bone graft is right for you, schedule a consultation at our office today.
Dr. Andrew Glenn can perform bone grafting procedures to fortify your jaw, including putty graft, block graft, or an advanced BMP procedure. Bone grafts are often performed on patients with weakened jaws in preparation for dental implant placement. In these cases, the bone graft is usually performed several months before the dental implants are placed.
Jawbone Health: A Closer Look
Like the rest of the human body, the jawbone relies on a healthy blood flow to deliver essential minerals and nutrients. In the jaw, this flow is stimulated during biting and chewing as the tooth’s roots absorb pressure. After a tooth is lost or extracted, the bone within the empty socket is resorbed so that the nutrients can be dispersed elsewhere throughout the body. Left untreated, jawbone deterioration can lead to further tooth loss and other complications.
Socket Preservation following Tooth Loss
Whether a tooth is lost to severe damage or disease, or requires extraction to preserve overall oral health, even a single empty tooth socket can contribute to gradual deterioration of the jawbone. A common technique used to preserve the socket involves reinforcing the empty space with bone or a fabricated bone substitute. The space is then covered with gum tissue, artificial membrane, or proteins that stimulate tissue regeneration to repair the socket and prevent facial collapse. Once healed, this tissue can also act as an adequate foundation for replacing the lost tooth with a dental implant.
Bone Grafts and Bone Regrowth
In advanced cases, socket preservation may not be adequate to reinforce a weakened jawbone. Potential implant candidates are frequently discounted because a lack of sufficient jawbone. In cases of extensive jawbone deterioration, a bone graft can help strengthen and reinforce the upper or lower jawbone, allowing it to support any number of of dental implants after healing is complete.
A ridge augmentation involves grafting bone to the jaw itself, while a sinus lift strengthens the posterior (back) region of the sinus bone in the upper jaw. The donor tissue may come from the patient’s own body, or from one of a variety of donor sources, depending on the extent of the graft and the patient’s health condition. For faster and more effective treatment, Dr. Glenn may recommend bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs). BMPs are proteins that are naturally produced within the body, and are used to promote and regulate bone healing and reformation during grafting.
Learn More about Bone Grafting
Dental implants are the most effective restorative option for improving the function of a smile and preserving long-term oral health. Patients who are curious to learn more about bone grafting can find some answers to common questions, and we can answer all of your questions in detail during a personal consultation. If your jawbone is too weak to support dental implants, or if you have recently undergone extractions and want to know how best to preserve and restore your smile, schedule an appointment with Dr. Glenn to learn more about your options.