When Is a Bone Graft Necessary?

graphic illustration of placement of a bone graft on a tooth

Your jawbone is very strong, and when it’s healthy, it lets you chew, bite, speak, and more. Your jawbone also supports your gums and teeth, so it’s very important to your oral health. Unfortunately, your jawbone can deteriorate. If this happens, a dentist may decide to perform a bone graft. What is this procedure? And when is it necessary?

What Is a Bone Graft?

Bone grafts are performed by transferring bone tissue from either your own body or a donor. The material is then placed in the affected area, where the tissue regenerates and strengthens your jawbone! There are different types of bone grafts depending on where you’ve lost jawbone density.

Who Needs a Bone Graft?

Gum disease, specifically periodontal disease, is a major cause of both tooth loss and jawbone deterioration, but your jawbone can also weaken due to trauma in your facial structure, developmental defects, or tooth loss for a reason other than gum disease. If you want dental implants, we may need to perform a bone graft first if you don’t have enough jawbone density. We use X-rays and oral exams to determine the state of your jawbone and whether a graft is necessary. Not ready to commit? Bone grafts can be placed during an extraction just in case you want a dental implant down the road.

Are Bone Grafts Painful?

Bone grafts are performed with either a local anesthetic or sedation, so you won’t feel any pain during the procedure! While you heal, you may experience some swelling, pain, and bruising, but these symptoms should go away after a few days. We’ll always provide detailed aftercare instructions, and if you’re ever concerned about a symptom, please call us right away!

Visit Bethea Family Dentistry for High-Quality, Stress-Free Dental Services in Columbia, SC

Many bone grafts are performed for patients getting dental implants, which are the only permanent tooth replacements. At our office, we’re proud to provide dental implants from start to finish. Interested in learning more? Please contact us today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Bethea!

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