Understanding the Basics of Bone Grafting

Understanding the Basics of Bone Grafting

Jul 01, 2021

A bone graft is a common surgical procedure that aims at regenerating bone after bone loss. Bone loss is the decline in bone mass and volume, usually occasioned by tooth loss and severe periodontal disease. 

When bone density decreases, an individual’s facial appearance may be negatively impacted. What’s more, bone loss can make it nearly impossible for one to receive replacement teeth, particularly dental implants. 

To speak to dentists well-versed in bone grafting practice, please call Hammond Pond Dental Group today. 

When is Bone Grafting Required? 

Bone grafting is usually required before undergoing dental implant surgery. Bone grafting creates a strong base that supports the artificial tooth roots, ensuring excellent stability and longevity. 

Even if you’re not looking to get dental implants, you may still require bone grafting treatment to rebuild your jaw after tooth loss. Bone loss usually affects adjacent teeth and gums and can lead to long-term health complications. 

Lastly, you may need bone grafting to rebuild your appearance, especially if tooth loss has resulted in facial collapse. Facial collapse is the unfortunate sagging of facial features that occurs as a result of severe bone loss. 

Individuals who have experienced traumatic jaw injury or congenital jaw deformities may also require bone grafting treatment. 

Types of Bone Grafts 

To perform a bone graft, the dental surgeon may borrow bone material from a different part of your body, an external donor, or use synthetic material. Based on where the bone grafting material is obtained, the types of bone grafts are classified as follows:

Autograft: A bone graft that uses bone obtained from your body, e.g., your hip or jaw. 

Allograft: A bone graft where the bone is borrowed from a different person, often a cadaver. 

Xenograft: A bone graft that involves bone from a different species, e.g., a cow or pig. 

Alloplasts: When a bone graft is conducted using synthetic lab-produced material, it is known as an alloplast. 

Bone Graft Procedures 

There are different dental bone grafts, namely, block bone graft, sinus lift, and socket graft. 

A block bone graft involves harvesting bone from the back of the jaw, usually near the wisdom teeth area. After removing a block of bone from the back of the jaw, the dentist places the bone into the section of the jaw that requires regeneration. This bone block is held in place by titanium screws. 

A sinus lift, sinus graft, or sinus augmentation involves lifting the maxillary or upper jaw sinus to make more room for bone. When bone loss affects the upper molars, the sinuses move down. A sinus lift restores the sinuses’ original position while also increasing the upper jaw’s stability. 

A socket preservation graft is performed immediately after an extraction and aims at preventing bone loss that might occur after tooth removal. To perform a socket graft, the dentist removes the tooth and then fills the tooth socket with grafting material, all within the same appointment. Socket grafts improve the outcomes of restorative treatments such as implants and bridges. 

Healing and Recovery 

Patients are sedated during bone grafting procedures. As such, you’ll not experience any pain during the procedure. 

Once the grafting procedure is completed and the sedatives and anesthesia wear off, you may begin to experience swelling and minimal pain. These can be managed using ice packs and pain medication. 

Your dentist will prescribe antibiotics to ward off infection. Please ensure you take all your medications as instructed. 

The healing and recovery periods differ depending on the type of surgery, the patient’s age, and overall health, among other factors. Usually, most people recover from bone graft surgery within two weeks to two months. Complete healing takes longer and also depends on numerous factors. 

For instance, socket and bone block grafts have an estimated healing period of four to six months, while sinus lifts usually require six months to heal. 

During the healing and recovery period, you must keep track of any changes and symptoms and share these with your dentist during your follow-up visits. 

Call Us Now 

If you’re looking for a bone grafting practice, reach out to Hammond Pond Dental Group today. We offer personalized dental care and are committed to providing exceptional dentistry and support to all our patients at all times. 

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