Bone Grafting and Sinus Lifts
What is a Bone Graft?
Bone grafting refers to the replacement of lost or missing bone. This may be in the jaw following surgery or trauma, or it may be in the alveolar bone, the part of your jaw that forms the ridges that hold your teeth. This provides the bone with sufficient height, width and strength to support a dental implant or the wearing of dentures.
Bone grafting is also used to repair bone that’s been lost around teeth if you’ve suffered from severe gum disease. Not only does the bone graft replace bone that’s been lost, but it also encourages regrowth of your own healthy bone.
Your own bone can be harvested from sites including the hip, chin, lower jaw or an artificial bone can be used depending on the amount of bone required and surgical requirements. Dr. Mehanna and Dr Yang will be able to discuss the best option to suit your individual needs.
Why would you need bone grafting surgery?
The most common reason for bone grafting surgery is bone loss. If you have lost a tooth or several teeth because of injury, cavities or gum disease, you are likely to suffer bone loss if the teeth have not been replaced. The pressure you apply to teeth as you eat keeps your jawbone strong, but with tooth loss the alveolar bone gradually breaks down and ‘resorbs’, which means that the bone is reabsorbed into the body.
Badly misaligned teeth that don’t allow for proper chewing can also lead to bone loss because the bone around those teeth is not stimulated sufficiently to keep it strong and healthy.
In some cases there may not be enough bone in the top jaw for dental implants to be placed.
A sinus lift is a procedure where bone is placed at the bottom of the sinus so that an implant can placed.