A bone graft is a procedure that replaces missing or damaged bone so that one or more teeth can be securely anchored in the mouth. After a tooth is extracted, the bone surrounding the root deteriorates. The jawbone can shrink over time if nothing is put in its place. This can lead to an unattractive smile with gaps in between your teeth.
During a bone graft procedure at Carlston Dental Group, the damaged and deteriorating bone is either removed or added in small amounts to the jaw to support and strengthen the surrounding teeth and tissue. The goal is for the newly grafted bone tissue to grow with the existing bone and restore it to its correct size. Once the graft has healed, it is strong enough to support a crown, bridge, or other tooth replacement option.
Types of Bone Grafts
- Autogenous grafts use the patient’s bone from another part of their body, such as their chin or hip, to replace the missing bone. This is usually the best option as it is the closest match in texture and color to natural bone. However, this may be limited if the patient does not have enough of their bone to use.
- Allografts use bone taken from other humans’ bodies, usually cadavers. These bones are sterilized before being transplanted into the patient’s body. While this is a good option for many patients, there can sometimes be complications, including rejection by the immune system.
- Xenogenic grafts use synthetic materials to replace some of the surrounding bone with a material like a hydroxyapatite sponge. This is often done when patients do not have enough natural bone in their jaw to support an implant properly.
The Procedure for Bone Graft
First, the damaged tooth will be reshaped for graft material preparation. The grafting material is then placed into the tooth’s socket and stabilized with sutures or screws while the area heals.
Once healing is complete, your dentist will attach an abutment to the implant post that protrudes through the gums. The abutment is the portion of the dental implant that will hold the crown.
Once all of this has been done, you must return to the office for a custom dental crown. Your new crown will be made of solid porcelain material and match your natural teeth in color and shape.
A bone graft builds up the bone in your jaw so your dentist can place a crown over the tooth. To learn more, contact Carlston Dental Group at 2472 Overland Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90064 or call (310) 838-0844.