How Implants Prevent Bone Loss
West Linn, OR
If you have periodontal disease or recently had a tooth extraction, you may be suffering from bone loss in your jaw surrounding the diseased tooth or teeth. Untreated, this could lead to unsightly gaps or might even prevent you from getting dental implants in the future. Luckily, ridge augmentation is a restorative dentistry procedure that can be used to protect or replace lost bone. The experts at Roane Family Dental can help you determine if this procedure is right for you.
What Is Ridge Augmentation?
Ridge augmentation is a common oral surgical procedure that helps recreate the natural strength and contour of the gums and jaw. Usually performed after a tooth extraction, the procedure is designed to rebuild the original height and width of the alveolar ridge.
There are many benefits to ridge augmentation. By proactively preserving your jaw, it can reduce your risk of additional bone and tooth loss. It can improve the fit of dental restorations such as bridges and dentures by evening the contours of your alveolar ridge. Since alveolar ridge recession can cause weakening of dental implants, ridge augmentation can prevent implant failure and provide improved stability for dental implants. Finally, ridge augmentation can improve your smile. Since the alveolar ridges provide the framework for your lips, ridge augmentation can give you a more even and youthful appearance.
Why Would I Need Ridge Augmentation?
The alveolar ridges are the two narrow strips of bone that support your upper and lower teeth. After a tooth loss or extraction, the bone surrounding the socket usually heals on its own, filling with new bone and tissue. Sometimes, however, the bone surrounding the socket may begin to recede. When this happens, the height, width and density of the bone surrounding the socket begins to deteriorate. This deterioration may make further dental work such as dental implants impossible or may be cosmetically unappealing. Ridge augmentation rebuilds the alveolar ridge to its original height and width, repairing cosmetic defects and allowing for future placement of dental implants.
How Does it Work?
Under anesthetic - usually local, but nitrous oxide, conscious sedation or IV sedation can also be used - we carefully clean the socket, then place the graft material, anchoring it in place with small titanium rods. There are many different types of graft tissue to choose from. Using your own tissue - called an autograft - minimizes the risk of an allergic reaction but requires a separate surgical procedure to harvest the tissue. You can also use specially sterilized animal (xenograft) or donor human (allograft) tissue to make the graft. Once the graft is in place, we stitch closed the surgical site.
After the procedure, you may experience some pain, bruising, and swelling at the surgical site. As you heal, your body heals around the new bone tissue, fusing it to your alveolar ridge. While everyone heals at a different rate, most people take six to nine months to recover fully.
Are There Any Risks?
Ridge augmentation is a surgical procedure with a high success rate. But, like any surgery, it comes with risks. The most common complications of the procedure are bleeding, infection, and surgical site pain. However, long-term complications such as allergic reaction or rejection of the graft, bone resorption, scars, and nerve damage can occur.
If you are missing teeth or preparing for an extraction, ridge augmentation may be a great way to preserve your oral health and smile. At Roane Family Dental, we are dedicated to finding the right treatment for you. Call our office at (503) 657-1215 to book your consultation today!