Dental Bone Grafts

Posted on: 14 September 2016

The idea of a bone graft may sound quite scary, but you may need one for your oral health. Fortunately, these grafts are now often done on an outpatient basis and can help restore your smile. If your dentist recommends one, you need to know what the procedure entails. 

Bone Loss

Unfortunately, once you lose a tooth, you start to lose bone. Your jaw only stays fully intact if your teeth remain in place and are engaged in frequent chewing. If you have multiple missing teeth, your jaw can soon deteriorate quite a bit. By the time you are ready for dentures or implants, you may not have enough bone to support them. In most cases, your dentist can solve this problem without subjecting you to a lengthy procedure. 


Today's grafts are usually done on an outpatient basis. The best way to approach tooth loss is to have your dentist immediately place a ridge graft in the empty socket. This type of graft is made of cow bone and serves to preserve your jaw in that spot. After a few months, the graft will be ready to hold an implant. This process allows you to have the implant when it works for you without risking bone deterioration. If you need a more significant graft, your dentist may do a bone block graft, one that uses bone harvested from your own mouth, usually from the area where your wisdom teeth were. That bone is inserted in the area that has deteriorated. Again, after a matter of months, your mouth will be able to handle implants.

Another procedure that may need to be performed is a sinus lift. This surgery is only done when the bone between the jaw and sinus passages is too thin so hold implants. As a result, the sinus area needs to be lifted and the space that is created filled with more cow bone  Only in the most severe circumstances will you need to have an inpatient bone-graft surgery.


Even if you choose not to have implants, you may need bone grafts so that your jaw can support traditional dentures. In either case, dental bone grafts can be an invaluable oral aid and allow you to enjoy an attractive smile.

If your dentist suggests having a bone graft, do not panic. The procedure can usually be done quickly and efficiently in your dental specialist's office. After a short recovery period, your dentist should be able to fit you with your choice of tooth replacement. 

For more information, contact a clinic like Kappenman Family Dental.