The strength of your jawbone is very important to your overall dental health. If your jawbone is weakened from missing teeth or physical trauma, you may need a bone graft so the jaw can securely hold both your natural teeth and dental implants. A bone graft helps to augment and rebuild your jawbone until it is dense enough to support a dental implant. At Dental Health, this surgery is offered to prepare your jaw for subsequent dental implant surgery to replace weak or missing teeth. Schedule a consultation with our board-certified Dental Health team at our office in Brattleboro, VT to learn more about bone grafting.
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Your jawbone may be weak if you have certain oral conditions, like gum disease, or if you experienced a physical trauma to your face. Atrophy can also weaken the jawbone if a tooth was missing, and it was either untreated or replaced with removable dentures or a cemented bridge. Bone grafting strengthens and prepares the jaw for a dental implant; however, you will need to be patient with the process. Some procedures can take months to complete, but you will have a stronger jaw that will not only support your dental implant but also your natural teeth for better overall oral health.
What To Expect
The process of your bone grafting procedure will vary based on the source of the graft and how much grafting is needed. You may have bone removed from one area of your body, such as the shin, hip, or chin, which is known as an autograft. This may be done in our office with local anesthesia and sedation, or in an accredited surgical facility under general anesthesia. Other graft options include an allograft that uses bone harvested from another person. A xenograft uses bone taken from an animal, typically a cow. An alloplast is a synthetic bone graft. During your consultation, the Dental Health team will discuss your graft options and help you determine the best choice for your needs.
When the selected graft is ready to be placed, a member of our team will numb the treatment area and make an incision in the gums to expose the jawbone. The prepared graft will be attached to the bone along with collagen and proteins that encourage the graft to attach and grow. The gum tissue will be sutured closed and the area will be cleaned.
Over the next 6 – 9 months, the graft will bond with your jawbone (osseointegration). During this time, it's important to maintain a good home oral care routine with brushing and flossing along with any products recommended by our Dental Health team. We may prescribe antibiotics or pain medication for any discomfort and inflammation after the bone graft. You may have additional appointments at our facility to check your progress and to determine when your jawbone is strong enough for a dental implant.
We will contact your dental insurance company to determine your coverage and out-of-pocket cost, but if it is deemed medically necessary, some of the expenses for the procedure are usually covered. During your consultation at Dental Health, we can estimate your costs whether you have insurance or not, and discuss payment options including medical financing.
Build up your jawbone so it can support both your natural teeth and dental implants with bone grafting at Dental Health. During your consultation, you can learn about your bone graft options and get a custom treatment plan that leads to a stronger jaw and healthier mouth. Contact our office in Brattleboro, VT to schedule your appointment.