Problems dental bone grafts solve
Your dentist will discuss any potential need for a dental bone graft with you. However, below are some of the common reasons our dentists may perform this procedure:
- To prepare for dental implants: Getting dental implants involves having small titanium screws placed in the jawbone, which replicate tooth roots. A bone graft procedure is commonly necessary to provide a foundation solid enough to support the implants.
- Tooth loss: If you suffer tooth loss, the section of the jaw that once supported the now-missing tooth may deteriorate. Even if you’re not having a dental implant put in its place, stabilising the jaw bone via bone grafting can minimise the risk of further bone loss.
- Gum disease: As gum disease left to fester can lead to jaw bone degeneration and eventually tooth loss, our dentists may recommend a bone graft where severe cases of periodontitis are or have been present.
- Bone loss: Jawbone loss, more common amongst the older population, can change the appearance of various facial features, particularly surrounding the mouth. Our dentists may recommend a bone graft procedure to help patients counteract those aesthetic changes because of losing bone density.
What happens during a dental bone graft?
A dental bone graft isn’t as scary as it sounds. In fact, modern dental techniques and our extra gentle team of dental professionals ensure that this small surgical procedure is relatively straightforward and minor, causing minimal discomfort.
- Anaesthetic is the very first step of the dental bone grafting process, so you shouldn’t feel a thing during the procedure.
- Once the area has been thoroughly cleaned, your dentist will make a small incision in the gum that is over the area of the jawbone being treated.
- They’ll then separate your gum from the bone, creating easy access for performing the graft. Whether your bone graft comprises bone from your body, donor bone or synthetic bone will depend on the severity of the bone loss and where it is in your jawbone.
- A temporary adhesive that dissolves over time holds your graft in place. Eventually, your existing bone and graft knit together, creating a new solid foundation.
- Finally, your dentist will close the incision with stitches that dissolve on their own once the initial healing phase is complete.
Dental bone grafting in Pennant Hills
Bone grafting procedure aftercare
After any surgical or invasive procedure, minor discomfort, swelling and bleeding are common, yet easily managed. Your dentist will provide you with the exact instructions for optimal aftercare, but here’s generally what to expect:
- Apply ice packs to your face near the surgical site frequently, in intervals, for the first few days post-surgery to help minimise swelling.
- Use over-the-counter pain relief medication to manage any pain – your dentist may provide a prescription.
- Sleep with your head slightly elevated for the first two nights post-surgery to minimise the risk of bleeding while you sleep.
- Avoid hard, sticky, crunchy, or hot food that can agitate the incision site and delay the healing process. Eating soft, liquid foods is recommended for at least the first few days.
- Strenuous exercise and activities, as well as those that risk impact to the head or face (i.e., contact sports) should be avoided while your wound is healing.
- Sleeping with your head slightly more elevated than usual prevents excessive bleeding during the night.
- Attend your follow-up appointments as recommended by your dentist