What Is Bone Grafting?

What Is Bone Grafting?

Obviously, no one wants to lose an adult tooth. But with implants, at least men and women know they have a more comfortable, more natural solution than traditional dentures. Therefore, dental implants have revolutionized the way we think about missing teeth.

One of the biggest benefits of dental implants is how secure they are (no slippage!). That’s because dental implants are anchored in your jawbone, so they can’t “pop out” or rub your sensitive gum tissue. 

But what if your jawbone isn’t thick enough to support an implant? That’s when a bone graft can help.

Our team at Brooklyn City Dental is skilled in bone grafting techniques to build up existing jawbone, making it thicker, denser, and stronger. At our practice in Brooklyn, New York, we use the most advanced methods to make sure our patients get the beautiful results they’re looking for. Here’s how grafting works.

Reasons for bone grafting

The primary reason to have a dental bone graft is to build up a “thin” jawbone. While some people have naturally thin bone density, for others, the bone becomes thin following the loss of one or more teeth. 

Your tooth roots play an essential role in keeping your jaw strong by stimulating the bone to replace old, worn cells with healthy new ones. Once a root is gone, that stimulation stops, and eventually, the jawbone thins and loses density.

That loss of bone density doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it develops over months. That’s why it’s so important to have a dental implant placed immediately following tooth loss or shortly thereafter, while the bone still has optimal density and strength.

Dental implants and more

As noted, probably the biggest reason to have a dental bone graft is to make sure your jawbone is strong enough to support a dental implant. Dental implants use a titanium post or anchor placed inside your jawbone. Over several weeks, the bone tissue fuses with the implant to hold it securely in place.

After the period of healing, your implant crown — the part that looks and feels like a natural tooth — is attached to the implant post. Not surprisingly, if your jawbone is thin or weak, it might not be dense enough to support the implant, especially when you bite or chew. Adding a graft increases that support.

Implants aren’t the only time a bone graft is recommended. Grafts can be used to protect the teeth on either side of a missing tooth. Once the jawbone thins after tooth loss, the roots of the adjacent teeth can become loose and weak, significantly increasing your risk of additional tooth loss.

Finally, bone grafts can help restore your face shape after losing multiple teeth due to decay, periodontal disease, or other issues. With grafts, you can avoid the “sunken-in” look that often accompanies tooth loss.

Getting a bone graft: What to expect

Bone grafts use tiny fragments of bone tissue harvested from your own body (often from the roof of your mouth) or from a donor (either human or cow). Some grafts are made of synthetic materials.

The grafts are placed during a simple surgical procedure. Once the grafts are in place, it can take a few months before they fuse with the natural bone in your jaw. We’ll monitor your progress during that time, and if you’re getting an implant, we’ll evaluate the density to make sure the post is placed at the right time.

Bone grafting is a revolutionary procedure. Our team at Brooklyn City Dental has extensive experience in grafting techniques to help you achieve your oral health goals. To learn more about dental bone grafts, call or book an appointment online today.

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