The roots of your teeth do more than just hold your teeth in place: they also stimulate the bone beneath the gums. When teeth are missing, there is nothing beneath the gums to preserve the bone. This lack of stimulation can lead to bone loss (also called resorption) in and around the jaw. At Arizona Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons in Tucson, AZ, and Oro Valley, AZ, we offer bone grafting procedures to restore lost bone.
Without adequate quality or quantity of bone tissue, it is impossible to place dental implants safely and securely. Additionally, bone loss can lead to dental shifting, changes in your facial structure, and other problems. Bone grafting is meant to restore bone that has deteriorated or been removed because of tooth loss, facial injuries, tumor surgery, or other causes. Our oral surgeons have years of experience performing a variety of different bone grafting procedures.
Types of Bone Grafting
All bone grafting procedures share the same basic concept: a solution of granulized bone material, growth factors, and other healing agents is applied in areas that lack the right amount or quality of bone. The bone material is either sourced from another part of your own body or a tissue bank, depending on the procedure. Oral surgeons usually perform bone grafting procedures in areas around the jaws and teeth, such as the alveolar ridge, sinuses, and tooth sockets.
Below are descriptions of some of the most common bone grafting procedures at our practice:
- A sinus lift is a bone grafting procedure that adds bone above the upper molars. The sinuses lie just above the upper molars and behind the front of your cheeks. When a person needs dental implants to replace their upper molars, sometimes the wall dividing the sinus from the oral cavity is too thin. Adding bone above the molars by lifting the sinus ensures that your implants can be placed safely and securely.
- Socket preservation grafts are used to combat bone loss around an empty tooth socket. When a tooth is lost or extracted, the bone surrounding the tooth can start to recede or resorb rapidly. To prevent this, oral surgeons can place a bone graft directly into the empty tooth socket to preserve facial structure and prepare for dental implant placement later on.
- Ridge augmentation is more common when multiple teeth have been missing for an extended period. Without stimulation from the teeth, the bony ridge that holds your teeth in place can become too thin, or parts of the ridge can deteriorate. Ridge augmentation can rebuild the height and width of the ridge to make space for dental implants.
- Major bone grafting procedures are sometimes necessary to repair injuries, facial defects, or tumor surgery sites. Usually, bone from your own hip or another part of the body will be used for major procedures. These procedures usually involve more extensive techniques, such as guided bone and tissue generation. Major procedures often require an overnight stay in a hospital or care facility.
Bone Grafting in Tucson, AZ, and Oro Valley, AZ
If you need a bone grafting procedure, or if you are considering dental implants, Arizona Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons is here to help. Dr. Robert S. Wood and Dr. Nicholas J. Coles will gladly perform a full consultation to help you find a treatment plan that works for you. To learn more about bone grafting, contact one of our offices in Tucson, AZ, or Oro Valley, AZ.