Bone Grafts Can Prevent Bone Loss
After a tooth extraction, your periodontist can place bone grafting material in the socket left behind by the extracted tooth. This will involve suturing the gum tissue over the bone graft to promote healing and encourage new bone to grow up around the graft.
A post-extraction bone graft can prevent excessive bone loss in the short term, but you really need to get a dental implant installed to prevent bone loss long term.
The pressures put on your jawbone by teeth (or an implant) stimulate the bone to remain strong. Once that pressure is absent, the bone begins to resorb into the your body, and if left unchecked, it can become thin and brittle to the point it might easily crack or break.
Bone Grafts Prepare the Way for Implants
Not only do bone grafts help reduce bone loss, and with implants, do so permanently; but grafts themselves act as supports for implants.
If your bone is too thin, an implant can't be safely place there or it might fail. Therefore, bone grafting surgery has to be done first before implant surgery. This involves relocating bone matter from another part of your body to the jaw or using a grafting material sourced from animals, cadavers, or synthetically produced.
The grafting material will fuse to the existing bone as well as stimulate new bone to grow around it, thus creating a strong foundation for a future implant root. Over time, new bone growth actually replaces the graft, but without the graft in place, that new bone would never have grown where you need it.
It can take a few months for the bone graft to heal enough to receive the implant, although this depends on the size of the graft and the type of implant. In rare instances, the graft and implant could be done together, and it could take less or more than 3 months for some grafts to heal.
Bone Grafts Protect Your Gums and Facial Form
Bone grafts, accompanied by implants ultimately, also prevent the deterioration of gum tissue where your original tooth used to be. They make it easier to keep your gums healthy and to properly care for them with daily dental hygiene.
Also, if too many teeth are lost for too long, and bone matter deteriorates sufficiently, it can even cause the shape of one's fact to change. This can lead to "facial sag," where the distance between nose and chin becomes noticeably shorter. Bone grafts help to prevent that as well.
Bone grafts are extremely important to your oral health if you have suffered tooth loss, and it's unwise to neglect them. To learn more about bone grafts, contact Dr. Kenzik in Ormond Beach, FL, today!