Dental Bone Grafting: Do I Need It?
Maybe you went to the dentist with a toothache or broken tooth and received bad news. Your tooth is cracked right through the center of it and you need to get it removed. In addition, your dentist recommends dental bone grafting at the same time. Maybe you’re not really clear if you really need it, which is why you’re here.
Losing a tooth creates a little stress for most people. They don’t grow back, and it can affect your chewing and your smile. It’s also “stressful” to your jaw bone, which is why dental bone grafting might make sense.
What Happens When A Tooth Is Removed?
It’s important to remember that removing a tooth is a minor surgical procedure. About two-thirds of a tooth sits in the bone, so we only see the top third. When it comes out, a hole is left behind.
This small wound fills in with blood, which forms a clot. Over a period of several weeks, cells from the blood and surrounding bone begin to form new bone. But the area starts out soft and hollow. That space allows the walls around the tooth to collapse inward, and the jaw shrinks in that area.
Right after the tooth is removed, your dentist may be able to preserve bone and limit the amount of jaw shrinkage that occurs. By placing bone grafting material, your body gets a headstart on healing and building bone. As a result, the bone doesn’t collapse into the hole and your jaw is preserved.
Several different types of dental bone grafting material exist. And different methods work in different situations. For example, grafting receding gums is a different procedure and uses different materials than grafting after tooth extraction.
In most cases, the best form of grafting after a tooth extraction involves using ground cadaver bone. Yes, this bone is from donors and undergoes careful sterilization and preparation for use in specific cases. The bone is sealed and labeled with specific codes for each dose and tends to work well with your own system. It provides a matrix or framework for new bone to build around
Why Preserve Bone?
Placing dental bone grafting material helps maintain the regular shape of your jaw in the area where they tooth is removed. This can be useful for several reasons:
- Solid bone increases the successful placement of a dental implant. Implants provide an exceptional way of restoring missing teeth.
- A dental bridge looks more natural when it’s placed over a grafted area.
- Proper bone heights help preserve the stability of the teeth near the missing tooth. This helps prevent root exposure, gum recession, and sensitivity.
- Smooth, thick bone may help support a removable full or partial denture better.
Dental Bone Grafting: Summing It Up
If your dentist recommends bone grafting along with a tooth extraction, you might want to give it serious consideration. Preserving more of your bone and preventing unnecessary jaw shrinkage has a number of benefits over the long run. Plus, you’ll be better prepared to choose a dental implant if you decide that’s what you really want in the future. Be sure to discuss the pros and cons of this procedure with your dentist. And if you need help finding a good dentist, chat with us at Dentalchat and we’ll help you get connected!