If you consider dental implants, it is essential to learn all you can about bone grafting, as these two procedures usually go hand in hand.
A bone graft for dental implants is essential should you not have naturally strong bones to support your implants.
A Common Procedure
When consulting with your dentist, be prepared to be told that you will require bone grafts. Unfortunately, in most cases, it is necessary. However, do not let this frighten you, as it is a routine procedure that is relatively straightforward and painless.
When is Bone Grafting Required?
If you do not have natural bones healthy enough to support your implants, you will require bone grafting. Reasons for weakened bone structure are as follows:
- Gum disease
- Injury to your face
- Empty sockets where teeth have been extracted
- Development defects
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What is Bone Grafting?
That is a procedure where the bones around your jaw are repaired or rebuilt by transplanting healthy bone tissue. Your bones are redesigned to be strong enough to support your implants.
How will I know if I need Bone Grafting?
The most significant reason you would need this procedure is if you have a missing tooth. Even if the tooth has only been missing for 24 hours, you might still require grafting.
Many factors come into play, like the socket could get infected, or the gap could be an awkward size that won’t allow immediate replacement. Bone loss will occur from the first minute the tooth goes missing.
Different Types of Bone Grafts and How they Work
There are a few different types of bone grafts. The type used will depend on the damage you have sustained to your teeth and their locations.
- Socket Graft
that is the most used graft, and its primary role is to prevent the reduction of the alveolar bone before it can occur naturally. Bone is taken from a donor and placed straight into your empty socket.
That not only helps to strengthen your bone but will strengthen your socket as well. Unfortunately, grafting and inserting the implant will not be done in the same procedure, and you will likely have to wait 4-6 months to heal before your implants can be placed.
A great benefit of this procedure is that you will experience less pain when your implants are placed.
- Lateral ridge preservation graft
This surgery is used to enhance the width of your jawbone to make place for the dental implant. That is also done with bone received from a donor.
- Block bone graft
If you have any significant defects in your jawbone, this is your surgery. Surgeons will take a small block of bone from the back of your jaw and place it into the defect. That will be tightened and held in place by tiny titanium screws.
That is another procedure where you will need to heal 4-6 months before your implants can be placed.
- Sinus lift procedure
Equine bone is used with the donor’s bone to expand the graft for this surgery. This option is used when a patient requires implants on the upper jaw, as this section of your jaw is generally not strong enough to support your implants.
The reasons why equine bones are used are as follows:
- This bone is more substantial than human bones and doesn’t dissolve as quickly.
- It is very similar to the human bone, so it can be a suitable replacement.
That is quite an evasive surgery and will require 8-12 months of healing before the permanent implant can be placed.
Is Bone Grafting Painful?
You might be hesitant to get dental implants because grafting sounds painful, right? Well, rest at ease knowing that this is not true. That is a same-day procedure, and you will be given an anesthetic and will be asleep the entire time.
There shouldn’t be any pain during your recovery, and if there is, you should see your doctor immediately as something might be wrong.
This procedure is straightforward and painless and prepares your mouth for your stunning new replacement teeth, so it is well worth it.
Bone Grafting Recovery
Once the surgery is finalized, you will be prescribed antibiotics to avoid infection.
Although most patients don’t experience any pain, your dentist may prescribe pain medication for a select few who are more sensitive and might feel slight discomfort.
Your bone graft has to be given time to heal and fuse with your natural bones and could take up to twelve months, depending on what type of graft you have received.
Everyone heals differently, so you will be asked to go for frequent check-ups so your dentist can decide when you are ready for your implant to be placed.
How much does Bone Grafting Cost?
As there are a few grafting procedures, the price will vary. Generally, the cost can range anywhere from $200-$1,200 per graft.
Bone grafting for dental implants is a necessary procedure and, if not done correctly, can result in your replacement teeth failing. This surgery helps strengthen your bones to support your new implants.
Usually, you will require this procedure when you have a missing tooth and your natural bone starts to weaken. There are a few types of grafting procedures. Knowing which one is recommended for your specific circumstances is essential, especially since they have different healing periods before placing the implants.
Bone grafting is usually painless and is a standard and straightforward procedure, so there is no need to worry. However, your recovery time will differ depending on what type of grafting procedure you need. Healing usually takes 4-6 months but can take 12 months for the more evasive techniques.
Many people are deterred from getting implants because of this surgery, but the truth is that bone grafting is not as horrible as it sounds and is very effective. Once you have your beautiful replacement teeth, you will see that it was so worth it.