Dental implants are a natural looking permanent replacement missing teeth. That said, the dental implant process takes a number of appointments to complete and sometimes requires a bone graft. Here's more about bone grafting for dental implants.
Dental implants are artificial roots that can be topped with natural looking dental crowns, bridges or full dentures. Dental implants are surgically placed into the jaw bone by a dentist.
If you are lacking healthy bone in the area where the implant will be placed bone grafting is necessary.
What is bone grafting?
A bone graft is essentially a bone transplant. Bone material from one part of your body (or synthetic bone material) is grafted onto the bone in another part of your body.
Generally, bone grafts are performed to fix bone that has been damaged by trauma, to increase the volume of bone in that area.
Bone grafting may be required to increase the bone material in the jaw before dental implant surgery, if the available jaw bone isn't thick enough, or is too soft, to support to a dental implant.
This can happen if the bone material deteriorates while the patient's tooth is missing. There are also cases when a patient has a naturally small jaw bone that's insufficient for supporting an implant.
Bone grafting creates a solid foundation to support a dental implant.
Do I need a bone graft for my dental implant?
Every patient is unique, depending on the condition of your jaw bone and the number of dental implants you require, you may need a significant bone graft.
A significant bone graft can take up to nine months to heal sufficiently for dental implants to be placed.
That said, you may only need a minor bone graft. Minor bone grafts can actually be done in conjunction with the dental implant surgery.
Dental implants are a natural looking option for replacing missing teeth, but they do require surgery and aren't appropriate for everyone.