Patients often require bone grafting to support their treatment with dental implants. Somerset Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Group uses this approach to strengthen sites for tooth replacement, to return an aesthetically appealing smile, and to restore natural tooth function.
While bone grafting is an important aspect of dental implant procedures, most patients find the experience very manageable. In part, this is due to the advanced skills and extensive training our oral surgeons offer. Our practice has also created a welcoming and warm environment for Somerset and Hunterdon County patients to receive treatment, making every visit with our staff more comfortable and personal.
What Is Bone Grafting?
Bone grafting is the process of taking bone from a donor site or bone bank and using it to replace bone that has been lost from the jaw. After a period of time, the transplanted bone will integrate with the jawbone, forming a stronger foundation for a dental implant.
Some Somerset and Hunterdon County patients who require tooth replacement do not have enough bone in the restoration site to sustain a dental implant. Bone grafting can resolve this problem, give new teeth the ability to chew and bite with normal force, and, ultimately, help restore a healthy smile.
As specialists in oral and maxillofacial surgery, our doctors can evaluate your needs to determine if you will benefit from bone grafting. You may be a good candidate for the treatment if:
You are replacing a tooth with a dental implant, and extracting the tooth will leave the site weakened. Bone grafting can shore up this weak point. Some patients will have the extraction and bone grafting procedure first. Then, after the site has healed and strengthened over 4-6 months, their oral surgeon will place the dental implant.
You have a tooth that has been missing for several years. Over time, the bone in the area of this missing tooth may have been resorbed, and you may need bone grafting to build up the site.
You require a dental implant near the sinus area. A dental implant must have a bone surface to which it can anchor, but the sinus is an empty cavity. Grafting bone in this area creates an anchoring surface.
Our Approach to Bone Grafting
Somerset Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Group doctors are always accessible and available to patients in an effort to provide quality care. We will spend time getting to know you and your needs, both to give you more personal attention and to provide the best treatment possible. Your confidence in our work will make your implant and bone grafting procedure a more relaxed experience.
Our doctors in Somerset and Hunterdon Counties have performed bone grafting procedures throughout their careers and on a daily basis in-office. We continually expand our techniques and participate in professional development, with the goal of increasing the strength and aesthetics of tooth restorations. We also use the latest medical advancements, such as platelet rich fibrin, to promote faster healing and a more comfortable recovery.
Bone Grafting With Our Practice
Since bone grafting is a support treatment, your experience with it should mirror the experience of receiving a dental implant. This means that your first step will be an initial consultation at one of our offices in Somerset County or Hunterdon County. During your visit, we will:
- Review your X-ray, or, if you don’t already have one, take a new panoramic X-ray or CT scan. This will give your doctor better insight into your needs.
- Discuss your overall medical history.
- Talk about your anesthesia options. Most patients receive a combination of a local anesthetic and nitrous oxide (laughing gas) so that they can be comfortable and relaxed during their dental implant procedure.
- Provide information and answers to any financial or insurance-related questions.
Based on your consultation, your doctors will determine the best approach for placing your dental implants, which may include bone grafting. You will then schedule your procedure to take place in our offices in Somerset County or Hunterdon County.
On the day of your procedure, Somerset Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Group staff will review what to expect and answer any questions you may have. During the surgery, your doctor will:
- Perform related procedures, which may include extracting damaged teeth or preparing the sinus for a graft.
- Position the bone grafts where they are needed.
- Use platelet rich fibrin to help reduce healing time.
- Place the dental implants. (This step will be part of a separate procedure for some patients.)
- Seal the surgical area and place sutures.
What to Expect After Bone Grafting
Following your surgery in our Somerset or Hunterdon County office, our staff will take you to a private recovery room. We will continue to monitor you and help you with any concerns you may have. We will also discuss the steps you should take in the days that follow so that you can have a safe and effective recuperation. These include:
- Apply the gauze pads that we provide to reduce bleeding at the surgical sites.
- Take pain medication as needed to maintain your comfort.
- Use an ice pack on the affected areas to limit swelling after surgery.
Somerset Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Group will remain available to you as you heal. We encourage you to contact our doctors if you have any questions along the way.
The next step in your treatment will depend on your individual needs. Some patients will wait 4-6 months for bone grafts to integrate fully into their jaw, after which time they can have dental implants placed. Other patients may be able to have dental implants placed at the same time as they receive grafts. In either case, treatment with our practice should help you regain the strength, aesthetics, and comfort that your original teeth provided.
If you want to restore your smile with dental implants, bone grafting may be part of your treatment plan. Contact our practice in Somerset County or Hunterdon County to learn more about how bone grafting works or to schedule a consultation.