Dental implants might be the biggest thing to happen in dental science in a long time. Nothing looks more natural and is easier to care for than an implanted tooth. For the tooth to be securely anchored, though, the underlying jawbone must be strong and ready to receive the implant. If you've been told that more steps need to be taken before you get your dental implant, read on to find out more.
The upper jaw is treated differently than the bottom jaw mostly because of the presence of your sinus cavities. This important cavity rests extremely close to your upper jaw, which is considerably thinner than your lower jawbone. To prevent the impingement of the implant into your sinus cavity and to make your upper jaw more stable, the sinus area is lifted using bone graft material.
Ridge Expansions Prior to Grafting
The bottom portion of your jaw may also need help getting ready for an implanted tooth. When bone grafts are called for, your bottom jaw may need to be expanded to allow more room for those grafts. Known as a ridge expansion, this surgery involves the placement of steel rods in the jaw area to expand it.
Bone Grafting Procedures
Some people need to supplement their jawbones using grafting material. One of the things that make implants so attractive and long-lasting is the way they form a strong bond with your jawbone — just like your natural teeth do. The implant itself sinks into your gums and jaw and needs to be inserted deeply into stable bone matter. The material used for a graft can come from several places.
- From your body (autogenous). This usually comes from a bone in a hip or thigh area.
- From a cadaver.
- From artificial bone material.
Discuss the options above with your dentist to decide what material is right for you.
Bone grafting is considered a minor outpatient procedure. This may sound major but it's been done for a very long time and the results can be spectacularly successful. Once the graft is performed, a waiting period of several months has to be endured to give the bone graft time to become one with your own jawbones. Then, you can proceed to have the implantation procedure. Get started on this process by speaking to your dentist. No one has to live with gaps in their smile. Find out more today. Contact a dental implant dentistry for more information.