If you need a dental implant Dr. Yarbrough may recommend a bone graft. Your jaw may be too weak or too soft to sufficiently support a dental implant. If your jawbone can’t support the new implant it will fail and lead to complications and further oral surgery. Depending on the condition of your jawbone you may need only a minor bone graft, or a major one. Dr. Yarbrough will examine your teeth and take the necessary images to determine the type of bone graft you will need. He will also explain the procedure and answer any questions you may have before proceeding.
The bone for a bone graft is usually taken from your hip bone. The damaged tooth is removed and Dr. Yarbrough performs the bone graft by inserting the prepared bone into your jaw to prepare your jaw for the metal post used for a dental implant. After the bone graft has healed the doctor will open your gum and drill a deep hole into your jaw. He then places the metal post and he may also place a temporary crown while you wait for your jaw and gums to heal. This may take several months.
Once you have healed from this procedure the doctor will remove the temporary crown and place an extension for the implant metal post, called an abutment, and the new crown. The entire procedure may take from three to nine months to complete depending on the type of graft you need and the type of crown you require. Most of that time is taken up by waiting for the bone graft to heal and your jaw to grow new bone.
As you heal osseointegration takes place. This is the when the jawbone unites and grows into the graft and dental implant. Each dental implant requires its own abutment so you may need more than one bone graft if you are receiving more than one new crown.
You may have several stages of surgery to achieve the desired results. Some of the common discomforts include swelling of your face and gums, bruising, implant site pain, and minor bleeding. You will need to eat soft foods during your healing period. Usually the doctor will use stitches which dissolve so you won’t have to return to the office to get them taken out.
Most bone grafts and dental implants are very successful. Regular dental checkups, a healthy lifestyle (including not smoking), and good oral hygiene will ensure your new crowns and remaining teeth stay healthy.
Please contact us or call today if you have any questions about bone grafts and dental implants. At Westgate Family Dental we want you to have the smile you deserve. We are proud to serve the entire Austin area, and we look forward to serving you.