Loss of teeth can result in resorption of a portion of your alveolar bone where the missing tooth used to be. In the first three years after a tooth extraction, a person can lose as much as 60 percent of their bone volume. This can result in mouth deformity, difficulty in chewing and speaking, and muscle dysfunction. Additionally, it can thwart a person’s attempt to get a prosthetic replacement via a dental implant later in life.
Fortunately though, at Oral and Facial Surgery Center, we use bone grafting material for augmentation for your jawbone.
Reasons for a Bone Graft
To support your dental implants, your jawbone has to be healthy and strong. If you have ever experienced oral conditions like advanced periodontal diseases, tooth extraction, various inflammations, or trauma to your face or teeth, it may result in loss of the quality of your jawbone. Patients who have worn removable dentures for a long period may also find their bone density compromised. With proper bone grafting, it is possible to augment the bone structure and bring it back to the quality that can securely support dental implants and give you a healthy and beautiful smile.
Bone Grafting Procedure
Bone grafting is a minimally invasive procedure. Dr. Kennedy and Dr. Ardoin may recommend you undergo a bone grafting procedure at the time of your tooth extraction for faster healing and better results. However, patients who have been missing their teeth for a long period can also benefit from a bone grafting procedure.
At the start of the procedure, we will desensitize the area with a local anesthetic. Then, we will cut your gumline to reveal the bone underneath. We will then pack it with bone grafting material, which contains protein and collagen, to encourage bone growth. The area is then stitched closed and allowed to heal.
Bone Grafting Material
Bone grafting material can be harvested via several methods:
The bone graft material is carefully disinfected to ensure no pathogen is passed on to the person receiving the augmentation. As the bone grows, it replaces the graft material, which is absorbed by the body. Depending on the health of the bone and other factors, it may take several weeks to several months for your jawbone density to increase sufficiently.
Bone Grafting Aftercare
After the bone grafting procedure is performed, we will give you specific oral care and dietary instructions. During the time it takes for your bone to build up sufficiently, you are not allowed to eat certain foods like hard food. Bad habits like smoking can also make the bone grafting procedure fail. We will also prescribe you medication to manage pain and prevent infection.
Although bone grafting seems quite complex, the result will be a great smile. Call us at 337-443-2533 for our Lafayette location or 337-381-3663 for our Opelousas location to schedule an appointment so that we can determine the health of your jaw and recommend customized treatment options.