Most people who want to get dental implants may have been told they need bone grafting first. Although it may seem complex or invasive, getting a dental bone graft in Raleigh can ensure you have a successful treatment while restoring the density and volume in your jawbone. For those who are unfamiliar with this procedure, we’re here to explain what it is, why it’s necessary, and what to expect during the surgery.
What is Bone Grafting?
Dental bone grafting is a procedure that adds volume and density to your jaw where bone loss has occurred. The bone graft material can be taken from another part of your body, someone else’s body, an animal, or made from synthetic materials. After placing the bone graft, it encourages your bone tissue to grow and regenerate.
Why is it Necessary?
Bone grafts become necessary when a person has had jawbone loss or needs certain restorative dental procedures. You need a healthy jawbone with enough height and thickness to ensure a successful treatment. Untreated periodontal disease can eat away at your jawbone and lead to tooth loss.
We may recommend a bone grafting treatment for you if you fit under any of these categories:
- If you’re getting a tooth extraction
- If you need dental implants
- If you’re getting your jaw rebuilt for dentures
- If you have significant bone loss from gum disease
Steps During the Treatment
Before getting a dental bone graft placement, we will need to check the health of your teeth by performing an oral examination. We do this to determine the extent of your bone loss. We’ll then discuss your treatment options and create a plan to meet your needs.
Knowing what to expect during the surgery can help put you at ease. Below are the steps during a bone grafting procedure.
Numbing and Creating the Incision
We will numb the area with a local anesthetic before creating a small incision in your gums. This will ensure that you’re calm and don’t feel anything during the treatment. Once the anesthesia kicks in and we create the incision, we move the gum tissue back slightly to expose your jawbone.
If we’re getting the grafting material from another area of your body, we will also need to numb the area and make an incision to retrieve it.
Cleaning and Disinfection
Once your jawbone is visible, we will thoroughly clean and disinfect the area of any contaminants. This is especially important if you’ve had gum disease.
Adding the Grafting Material
Next, we’ll add the grafting material. We may need to cover the bone graft with a membrane for additional protection in some cases.
Repositioning the Gum Tissue
The last step before we close the incision is to reposition the gum tissue. We may use sutures to stabilize the graft and prevent it from shifting. If we took the grafting material from another part of your body, we would also stitch that area together.
Dental Bone Graft Aftercare
It’s normal to notice swelling and bruising at the site of the bone graft procedure. This should go away after a few days, and pain medications can help relieve your discomfort. Put ice over the affected area to minimize swelling, and prop yourself up to sleep.
For the first few days after a bone graft treatment, your diet should be mostly cool or room temperature liquids or soft foods. Hard or crunchy foods can get stuck in the graft site, so avoid those until after you’ve healed. You’ll also want to avoid alcoholic beverages and drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.
Your initial recovery period is about two weeks. Following all our post-operative care instructions and eating a healthy diet can ensure you heal quickly and properly. If you suspect anything out of the ordinary, make sure to give our office a call!
Other Types of Bone Graft Treatments
Did you know a person may need different types of bone grafts? Some of these other procedures may be required to ensure the success of dental implants or other surgeries. Some of the common bone graft treatments include:
Sinus lift – a procedure that raises the sinus floor to its proper position above the molar and premolars. It can drop down if the back teeth are missing and invade the space your roots used to occupy.
Ridge augmentation – a procedure that widens the jaw to support dental implants. Missing teeth can cause the supporting jawbone to become thinner.
Socket preservation – a procedure that places a bone substitute in your socket directly after tooth extraction. This helps reduce bone loss and prevents the sides of the socket from caving in.
Distraction osteogenesis – a procedure that makes a longer bone out of a shorter one. It involves cutting the bone into two pieces and pulling them apart slowly.
Do You Need a Dental Bone Graft in Raliegh?
Whether you’ve suffered from bone loss due to gum disease or you’re preparing for a dental implant procedure, bone grafting can help keep your jaw full and healthy. If you think you need a dental bone graft in Raleigh, give Tryon Family Dentistry a call to schedule an appointment.