A Complete Guide to Bone Grafts for Dental Implants

It is common for patients receiving implants to require bone grafting. This painless procedure ensures that the dental implant remains secure in the jawbone and significantly reduces the risk of problems.

What Does a Dental Bone Graft Involve?

Dental bone graft surgery today is a much simpler procedure than it was in the past. It takes place in a dental clinic and more often uses the bone of an animal or a material like a bone than the patient’s own bone. The dentist inserts the graft into the jawbone to stop the collapse of tissues and to regenerate natural bone.

Types of Bone Grafts

Although some patients need major bone grafts, the majority only require a simple procedure. These fall into three categories:

Socket grafts

The technical name for a socket graft is an alveolar ridge preservation graft. It is necessary when the dentist needs to wait after extracting a tooth before inserting the implant. This bone graft fills the space left by the removed tooth, usually with cow bone.

Block bone grafts

A block bone graft, also called an autogenous ramus or chin graft, uses the patient’s own bone. This is necessary if cow bone is insufficient, such as when time elapsed after the tooth extraction, when a tooth is lost due to a disease that also caused bone destruction, when a tooth is missing due to a congenital condition, and when a bone is lost due to dental trauma.

Subantral grafts

The third common type of bone graft is called a subantral graft or sinus lift procedure. It is used for implants in the upper jaw in the maxillary sinus. A subantral graft will have no effect on your breathing nor will it cause sinus pain.

Benefits of Dental Bridges

Dental bridges are used to restore or fill in for a missing tooth or teeth. There are some negative consequences to leaving the space empty over time. There are other options for missing teeth such as partial dentures or implants. However, there are some benefits of dental bridges.

Aesthetic Appeal

A bridge is fastened in the empty space where a tooth once was. It fills in the empty spot but also helps improve your looks. Because dental bridges have to be fixed, the teeth on either side of the bridge are usually crowned. This helps improve their appearance and helps give your teeth a more natural look.

Permanent

A dental bridge is a permanent fixture in your mouth. The good thing about this is that doesn’t have to be removed in order to be cleaned like dentures. You will need to continue good oral hygiene habits and follow any special cleaning recommendations made by your dental professional.

Long Lasting

Another one of the top benefits of dental bridges is that they are durable and last an indefinite amount of time.

Quick Procedure

A bridge will take just a little bit longer than getting a single crown, depending on the type of bridge and its size. It should only take two visits to the dental clinic to complete the treatment. This is much faster than getting implants, or than getting partial dentures.

Not as Invasive as Implants

Implants will require several surgical procedures to get the posts placed. If there is a bone loss, implants will also require some bone grafting before the posts can be placed. This can require numerous visits and surgeries to complete the implant procedure. Bridges are a good option for those who cannot endure surgery for medical reasons.