Your jawbone's strength is important to your total oral health. With a weakened jawbone from physical trauma or missing teeth, you may need to receive bone grafting so your jaw can properly fit both dental implants and your natural teeth. Bone grafting helps to reinforce and build up your jawbone so it's stable enough to hold an implant. At LifeTime Smiles of OC, osseous surgery is performed to strengthen your jawbone before implant surgery to replace missing or weak teeth. Make an appointment with highly trained dentist Dr. Kareem Abraham at his office in Santa Ana, CA to get more information on surgical bone grafts.
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A weakened jawbone may be caused by some oral diseases, like gingivitis, or if you had a physical trauma to your mouth. The jawbone may begin to atrophy if you were missing a tooth (or teeth), and it wasn't treated/was replaced with a removable or cemented restoration instead of a dental implant. A bone graft builds up the jaw and prepares you for a dental implant; however, you'll have to be willing to commit time to the process. Bone grafting may require several months to heal, but you'll get a stronger, healthier jawbone that will support your dental implant and your natural teeth to give you a healthier mouth.
What To Expect
The exact process of bone grafting surgery will depend on the graft source and the amount of grafting being done. Your bone graft may be taken from your own body from areas like your chin, hip, or lower leg, which is called an autograft. An autograft may be performed in our office using sedation and local anesthesia, or at a surgical facility using general anesthesia. Additional graft methods include an allograft, which harvests bone from another human. A xenograft is a bone graft from an animal, usually a cow. A synthetic bone graft may also be used, known as an alloplast. At your consultative appointment, Dr. Abraham will go over your options for bone grafts and help you select the best method.
Once your graft is ready, Dr. Abraham will prepare the areas being treated and place an incision through the gum tissue to reveal the bone. Your bone graft will be affixed to your jawbone with proteins and collagen that stimulate growth in the graft. The incision will be closed with sutures and the mouth will be cleaned.
In the following six or more months, the graft should heal into your jaw, a process known as osseointegration. Within this timeframe, it is critical to follow a proper oral care routine with flossing and brushing, plus any additional products suggested by Dr. Abraham. He may write a prescription for pain medication or antibiotics for any inflammation or discomfort after your graft. You may need to make follow-up appointments at LifeTime Smiles of OC for progress checks and to decide when you are ready for the dental implant process.
Our office can talk to your insurance company to understand your benefits and personal costs, although if it's medically necessary, part of your costs for the surgery are typically paid. At your consultative appointment with Dr. Abraham, he may be able to estimate your costs with or without dental insurance and explain payments we accept, including low-interest medical financing.
Plan Your Procedure
Help strengthen your jaw so it can hold both dental implants and your natural teeth with bone graft surgery at LifeTime Smiles of OC. During your consultation with dentist Dr. Abraham, you can get more information about your options for graft material and get a unique plan for treatment that gives you a stronger jawbone. Contact us in Santa Ana, CA to schedule your appointment.