Bone grafting can be used to prevent bone loss or to create bone. Bone grafting is used in preparation for implant placement. Dental Implants are supported by bone. Sufficient amount of bone is necessary to hold the implant in place. With a proper foundation, we can reconstruct function and esthetics with dental implants.
Why do you need bone grafting for dental implants?
When placing a dental implant it is very important to have a solid foundation. The bone supports the implant. Solid bone needs to support the implant for it to be stable and have a good long term prognosis. If you don’t have enough bone for a dental implant, bone grafting and tissue engineering utilizing stem cell technology can aid in creating a good bone mass that can supports your implant.
Why do I not have enough bone?
The tooth keeps the bone in place. When a tooth is lost, the bone collapses and overtime it becomes thinner. Just like building a home, an implant needs a good foundation. The bone is the foundation for an implant. Bone resorption is common over time after losing a tooth or teeth and therefore grafting may be necessary to re-create the bone.
What are the different types of bone grafts?
There are 2 types of different bones. One is your own bone which is called autologous bone and the other bone is bone from the bottle (allograft). Autologous bone can be harvested from various places including chin, the back of the jaw (ramus), upper jaw, hip of the leg. The bone from the bottle comes from human cadavers and cows (bovine) and they are treated with chemicals leaving a clean structures that creates a scaffold. This avoids having a second surgical site. However, it does not contain stem cells like your own bone. The size of the defect and location dictates the type of bone graft. Tissue engineering may be required in larger defects for optimal bone formation. Dr. Song and Dr. Um are experts in bone grafting and implant placement.