Bone Graft: What are they and how do they work?
A bone graft allows us to add to insufficient bone so there can be enough bone to support an implant.
The success of a dental implant, it’s ability to support a dental restoration, is very much dependent upon how much bone is available in the site where the implant is placed. There are lots of things that affect the bone volume. They include periodontal disease, trauma and infections. It is not unusual to open up a site in the mouth for implant placement and find out that some of the critical supporting bone is missing.
Bone Graft Procedure
No problem…. We have great techniques available to us to replace missing bone. We can increase the height of bone and the width of bone. We can fill in anatomical voids in bone. That creates new bone and we can fill in all sorts of defects that develop when teeth are lost. We can even use grafting techniques to prevent the loss of bone in circumstances where bone would normally be lost like the extraction of a tooth.
Replacing missing bone or adding to existing bone is very often essential to the success of a dental implant and the ensuing restoration. The techniques to do this are well documented and should be used when indicated by any dentist who places dental implants. Most of us will have a good idea when additional bone or bone repair will be necessary before actually starting the placement of a dental implant. The patients should be informed of this possibility. We can use a CT, or Cat Scan which is a 3 dimensional image of the jaw that shows us how much bone we actually have. Sometimes, however, we do get fooled and run into areas where unexpected bone grafting is indicated. As long as the dentist is prepared to replace or add to the existing bone and the patient understands the bone grafting procedure, there should not be any problem with these techniques.