If you have an inadequate volume of tissue or bone necessary to successfully place dental implants, you may need a bone or tissue graft to rebuild the jaw. At the Southern California Center for Oral & Facial Surgery, Dr. Jay Reznick is a Board-Certified Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon who can perform these advanced surgical procedures. If you were told you were not a candidate for dental implants because of bone or soft tissue atrophy, call their Tarzana, California office or use the online booking agent to find out about grafting options.
If you have missing teeth due to decay or accident, Dr. Reznick recommends a dental implant to replace that tooth or teeth. An implant provides the best replacement option that looks and functions like natural teeth.
An implant requires a metal post be placed into your jaw bone and a prosthetic tooth attached. But, for this surgery to happen, you must have an adequate bone volume to support the post. If your jawbone is too thin or too soft, implant surgery may fail.
In some people, atrophy from the lost tooth or aging has led to a loss of bone volume necessary to successfully support a dental implant. If you’ve been missing teeth for a long time, you tend to lose bone in a process known as resorption.
Dr. Reznick then needs to rebuild the jaw so he can install the implant. In these cases, he recommends a bone graft or graft of other tissue so that he can place the implant.
Depending on the location and the amount of tissue needed, Dr. Reznick may obtain the necessary tissue from your bones, a tissue bank, or a substitute synthetic material. He'll determine which option is best for your circumstances.
For small grafts, he usually uses freeze-dried bone from a bone bank. It’s mixed with a ceramic material that has the same mineral components as natural bone. Once Dr. Reznick performs the graft, you have a healing period of four to eight months.
After that, Dr. Reznick performs the implant surgery. In some people, he can perform the graft and implant at the same time, which accelerates the treatment.
If you have a case that needs a larger quantity of bone, Dr. Reznick may take bone from another part of your body and place it in the jaw. The advantage is your body is more likely to accept living bone from your body, improving the success of the grafting process.