Good candidates for a bone graft include those who are planning to undergo implants for missing teeth, those with tooth loss or gum disease, and those with bone loss. While the jaw and gums support natural teeth, the teeth also help to stimulate the jawbone. When tooth loss occurs, the supporting bone loses its primary purpose, and the process of resorption begins. This process occurs when the body absorbs calcium from the jawbone and distributes it to other areas of the body.
The lack of calcium in the jawbone makes it more difficult to support the implant. Resorption will also mean there is less bone that can bond with the titanium implant and help to solidify a firm hold of the implant. The purpose of a bone graft procedure is to rebuild bone density that may have become lost after the natural tooth was lost.
The first sign is the thickness of the bone inside the jaw. If the bone inside the jaw is thin, then we will likely recommend a bone graft.
If the bone is soft, then a minor bone graft might be required to strengthen the bone and provide additional support for the implant.
Your dentist may recommend platelet-rich plasma and bone morphogenetic protein as a way to help regenerate and strengthen bone in the bone grafting process. Platelet-rich plasma may also increase the healing time after the procedure.
Experience is always an advantage when choosing a bone grafting specialist, but it is not the only factor to consider. It is helpful to have a conversation with the professional and ask questions about their education and training. You can also ask for more information about how the process works and who else will assist in the treatment process.
If the patient intends to replace a damaged or loose tooth with a dental implant, then tooth extraction is necessary. A dentist may also recommend treatment for periodontal disease in addition to a bone grafting procedure, along with filling and repairing any eroded or damaged teeth.
The length of bone augmentation is dependent upon the type of procedure(autograft, alloplastic, and more.), the location of the bone graft, and various other factors. However, it is typically a routine procedure that does not take more than several hours at most. The patient can return home soon after the process is complete.
The cost of bone grafting depends on the patient’s case, the severity of their condition, and the type of bone graft being performed. On average, bone grafting can cost between $200 to $1,200 per graft. We encourage patients to speak with their insurance provider to find out what their plan covers and learn about any copays that the procedure may entail.