Bone grafting is a fairly common dental procedure that may need to be done before replacing missing teeth. It is usually required because of bone loss in the jawbone due to missing teeth. Without a tooth in place to stimulate the jawbone, the bone begins to deteriorate. If the bone has deteriorated beyond a point where dental implants can be placed, Dr. Burton Melton may recommend a bone grafting procedure.
Bone grafting is the replacement or augmentation of missing bone around your teeth, usually done before replacing missing teeth. There are three types of bone graft procedures: autogenous, allograft, and xenograft.
Autogenous grafts use bone taken from an area of the patient’s body and transplant it into the mouth. Typically the bone is taken from a non-essential area, like the chin. An autogenous bone graft has several benefits: the bone used comes from the patient and is used in the patient, reducing the chances for infection or rejection; the bone is still “live,” meaning it still has active cellular material.
Allografts are similar in that they also use human bone in the transplant. However this type of bone graft uses bone from someone else. Typically the bone comes from cadavers who have donated their bone. All of the material used in an allograft is carefully screened and very safe.
Xenografts use bone from a non-human source. Usually this material is sources from bovines, or cows. Xenografts and allografts have an advantage in that they do not require a second surgery before replacing missing teeth.
In the case of an autogenous graft, the area being augmented and the area where the bone is being removed are numbed. Dr. Melton will then make an incision around the gums to determine how much bone is needed.
Dr. Melton then makes a cut below the lower front teeth, exposing the chin bone. He will remove part of the bone and marrow and anchor it into place with small titanium screws where it is needed in the jawbone. All incisions are then closed with stitches.
Following the procedure, Dr. Melton will most likely give you antibiotics and pain medication. You will also be given a diet that should be followed strictly during the healing process. The diet consists mostly of soft foods like pasta and Jell-O. It usually takes six to nine months to heal. Replacing missing teeth cannot take place until your mouth has healed.
To learn more about bone grafting and dental implants in Albuquerque, call today for a consultation with Dr. Melton.
Dr. Burton Melton is a leading prosthodontist in Albuquerque, NM. Along with the knowledgeable staff at Implant Dentistry of the Southwest, Dr. Melton offers a variety of advanced treatment options including dental implants, All-on-4 implants, implant supported dentures, bone grafting, and TMJ procedures. Dr. Melton welcomes patients from Albuquerque, NM; Santa Fe, NM; and Northern New Mexico. Call (505) 883-7744 to schedule your appointment or click here to request an appointment online.