As we age or are faced with disease, tooth loss can be followed by a natural process called resorption. During resorption, bone is gradually broken down and absorbed into the circulatory system. As we lose more teeth and bone structure surrounding the teeth, facial features can visibly change and begin to sag. However, the process of bone grafting can help rebuild the bone.
Our bones are often thought of as fixed materials in our bodies, but they are continuously undergoing remodeling. Remodeling is a process in which old bone is replaced with a new, stronger bone while the old bone cells are recycled. Remodeling can often cause bone damage or weakening of the bones that hold our teeth in place. Bone grafting helps strengthen these weakened areas of our bone structure.
The procedure is usually be done in a dentist’s office and consists of a small opening in the gums where grafting material is placed in the bones. The grafting material contains minerals that allow your body to produce new bone. It can come in various forms including powder, granules, and a gel. The grafting material may come from an animal, a person, or even yourself after it is cleaned and sterile in a laboratory. Following the placement of the bone graft, it is normally coated with a thin membrane that serves as a foundation for the fresh bone to be formed upon.
Even though inserting a bone graft is a minimally invasive procedure, it still requires a small incision. There is a risk of infection once incisions are made, which is why you must leave plenty of time for healing. When you get the bone graft, the dentist will inject local anesthesia into your gums, numbing only the region that will be affected. You can expect some discomfort, inflammation, and reddening at the incision site, but this is usually managed with over-the-counter pain relievers and should go away after a few days.
Many patients with periodontal disease or other dental problems may find that bone loss complicates their situation. Bone grafting is a simple treatment that will help to rebuild bone in the jaw, allowing for a healthier appearance and better dental results. If you think that bone grafting is right for you, please contact us at Dental Designers to schedule an appointment.