What is bone grafting?
As with muscles that go unused for prolonged periods of time, the jaw bone can atrophy or resorb if a missing tooth is not replaced. Then, if you should decide to replace the tooth down the road, your jaw bone will lack the quality and support required for the placement of dental implants, which may even lead to the loosening of other teeth. Luckily, Dr. Poore can regrow bone that has resorbed so that you can receive dental implants. The procedure used to restore lost bone is called bone grafting.
You may need to undergo one or more of the following bone grafting procedures:
- Nerve Repositioning: The inferior alveolar nerve, which gives feeling to the lower lip and chin, may need to be moved to make room for placement of dental implants in the lower jaw.
- Ridge Expansion: In severe cases, the alveolar ridge has been resorbed, and a bone graft is placed to increase ridge height and/or width.
- Sinus Lift Procedure: This procedure involves elevating the sinus membrane and placing a bone graft onto the sinus floor, allowing implants to be placed in the back part of the upper jaw.
- Socket Preservation: Once a tooth is extracted, artificial bone is placed in the socket to help preserve the bone and gum tissue for implant placement.
Depending on your specific condition, your doctor may perform any of these procedures separately or together; they are most often performed separately from the dental implant procedure.
Where does my bone graft come from?
Optimally, bone graft material is taken from your own bone, either from inside the mouth, from the hip, or from the tibia at the knee, as this generally ensures better surgical results. If for some reason your own bone cannot be used, your surgeon can use an alternative material, such as bone from a tissue bank or a mineral bone substitute.
What is tissue grafting?
Patients suffering from gum recession are encouraged to have a tissue graft, or gum graft, to protect teeth from damage. Gum recession is the tissue surrounding the teeth pulling away, exposing more of the tooth—even the root—potentially causing tooth loss and damage to the supporting bone. Patients are strongly encouraged to monitor oral health regularly, as gum recession is a slow, gradual process and easily goes unnoticed at first.
If you suffer from gum recession, your doctor may suggest one of three different types of tissue grafts, based on your individual situation and needs:
- Connective tissue grafts: Connective tissue is taken from the roof of your mouth beneath the outermost layer of tissue. The tissue is then relocated to the area surrounding the exposed tooth roots.
- Free gingival grafts: This is similar to a connective-tissue graft, except tissue is removed directly from the roof of the mouth, not from under a flap. This is a common procedure for patients with thin gums.
- Pedicle grafts: Rather than taking tissue from the roof of the mouth (the palate), pedicle grafts pull nearby gum tissue to cover the exposed tooth root.
As with bone grafting, it is best if your own tissue can be used. However, graft material can be obtained from a tissue bank if your own tissue cannot be used.
Contact our office immediately for a consultation if you experience any of the following symptoms: bleeding of the gums that lasts longer than 20 minutes after applying pressure, unusual bruising, pain, or swelling in the mouth.
Where can I get bone or tissue grafting in Monroe County, PA?
At Monroe Oral Maxillofacial & Implant Surgery, we offer a wide variety of oral and facial surgery services, including multiple bone and tissue grafting procedures. Dr. Matthew Poore and his highly skilled team serve all of Monroe County including East Stroudsburg, Stroudsburg, Marshalls Creek, Tannersville, Bartonsville, Bangor, Bushkill, Brodheadsville, Tobyhanna, Sciota, Saylorsburg, Nazareth, Swiftwater, Mt. Pocono, Reeders, Mt. Bethel, Cresco, Blakeslee, Pocono Summit, Effort, Kresgeville, Kunkletown, Pen Argyl, Hazelton, PA, and Blairstown, NJ.