What is Dental Bone Grafting?
A dental bone graft is a surgical procedure used to "build up" or reconstruct an area of the patient’s jaw using a sample of bone taken from another source. The bone graft material can come from another site on the patient’s own body. It can be sourced from a bank of human bone tissue which is stored just like human blood is stored in a blood bank. The graft material can also be a xenograft, which is bone tissue taken from an animal, usually bovine. Finally, a synthetic rhBMP may be used which stimulates the body to produce new bone in a given area.
How is Dental Bone Grafting Done?
The procedure takes place in a clinical setting. Anesthetic is used to alleviate pain. Then the oral surgeon will make an incision in the area which is to accept the bone implant. If the replacement tissue is to come from the patient, then a surgeon will also make an incision to retrieve the replacement bone. The replacement tissue will be stitched into place. Sometimes the oral surgeon will use metal pins to secure it firmly. The healing process usually takes between four to five months, and the patient will be directed to avoid chewing in the affected area and to take only soft foods. When is Dental Bone Grafting Necessary?
Bone loss in the jaw can result from injury or disease. But it is most often the result of missing teeth. When teeth are missing, the jaw bone will atrophy, changing the patient’s appearance and altering bite characteristics. Dental bone grafting is done to repair the damage and changes of this nature and to restore the patient’s normal jawline.