Dental implants are a highly popular treatment used for replacing missing teeth. The treatment uses titanium posts, which are surgically inserted into the jawbone, to support your replacement teeth. The bone fuses to the implants as you recover from surgery, a process called osseointegration. This process stabilizes the posts in your jaw so that they are secure and do not move. Dental implants provide numerous benefits over traditional replacement treatments. They are more comfortable, more natural in appearance and they help to protect the health and shape of your jawbone. While implants can be used in a variety of situations, they require a certain amount of bone mass in your jaw for proper osseointegration. Without it, implants may fail. In the event of too little bone mass, Marketplace Dental Excellence can help with ridge augmentations.
What is a Ridge Augmentation?
A ridge augmentation is a surgical procedure that involves the use of a bone graft. This procedure takes bone graft material, whether it is from your own body, from a donor, or even a synthetic material, and places into the weakened areas of your jaw. Your existing bone fuses to, or around, the graft material, restoring strength and shape to your jaw, and making dental implants possible.
Types of Bone Grafts
There are several types of different bone grafts. During your consultation, we will discuss all of the different options and help to determine the best type of bone graft for you. Types of bone grafts include:
- Autogenous. This type of graft uses mass from your own body, typically taken from the hip or tibia. While it helps to avoid the potential for disease transmission and rejection, it does require two surgical sites.
- Allogenic. This graft uses bone from a compatible bone donor. The risk of disease transmission and rejection is low, as the bone is screened before use, and only one surgical site is needed.
- Xenogenic. This type of graft uses bone mass from another species, such as a cow or pig. The bone is highly processed to lower the risk of disease transmission. Like allogenic grafts, only one surgical site is needed.
- Synthetic materials. This type of graft uses synthetic materials such as bone morphogenic proteins or demineralized bone matrix.
How is a Ridge Augmentation Performed?
A ridge augmentation is done under local anesthetic and sedation. Your procedure begins with small incisions in the gums to expose the weak areas of your jaw. Next, we take your bone graft material, whether it is your bone mass or otherwise, and place it into the jaw. A thin membrane may be placed over the jawbone before suturing the gums closed, called guided tissue regeneration. This helps to keep faster healing tissue, your gums, from interfering with the healing of slower healing tissues, the bone. Once the gums have been sutured closed, you are sent home to begin the healing process.
Healing can take up to a year to complete, depending on your situation. During this time, your natural jawbone fuses either to or around the graft, growing stronger. We closely monitor your progress to make sure you are healing properly. Once you have fully healed, we are then able to begin the process of placing dental implants.
With bone mass restored, dental implants become possible, helping you to avoid the need for bridge or dentures. For more information, call us at (480) 545-8700.