Dental implants are one of the most popular solutions today for replacing missing teeth. This treatment provides many significant benefits over traditional treatments. Not only do they restore the functions of your missing teeth and improve the quality of your smile, but they are also more comfortable, easier to care for, and provide a long-term solution.
While an incredibly successful treatment, the success of dental implants relies significantly on the condition of your jawbone. If your jawbone is too weak, your implants may fail. At Treasure Valley Oral & Facial Surgery, we can help to increase the success of dental implant treatment with a ridge augmentation.
What Exactly are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are a modern solution for tooth loss. This treatment uses small posts, typically made from titanium, that are surgically placed into your jawbone. The posts are what provide support for your replacement teeth. Dental implants can be used in a variety of different situations. They can replace an individual tooth, several teeth, or even an entire arch, providing you with alternatives bridges, partial dentures, and full dentures.
Your Jawbone and Implant Success
As you heal from dental implant surgery, your jawbone gradually fuses to the posts. This fusion is called osseointegration, and it is a completely natural process. The success of dental implants relies on osseointegration. For your bone to fuse, however, there needs to be sufficient bone mass remaining in your jaw.
One of the important roles of your teeth is providing stimulation for your jaw. Every time you chew, the teeth stimulate the bone, which tells the body to send essential nutrients. After tooth loss, your bone loses the stimulation from your missing teeth. Because of this, your body sends fewer nutrients. Your bone begins to weaken and lose mass. If you have lost too much bone mass, your jawbone cannot properly fuse to the implant posts. This can result in unstable restorations and even complete implant failure.
If you have lost too much bone mass, this does not mean that you cannot get dental implants. You may first be recommended for surgery to restore missing bone mass. If you have lost a significant amount of bone mass in your jaw, you may be recommended for ridge augmentation. This is a type of bone graft that restores missing bone mass, as well as the height and width to your jawbone. Bone mass is transplanted to the weak areas of your jaw. This bone mass may be taken from another region of your own body or a donor. As you heal from your ridge augmentation, your existing bone mass fuses to the graft material, restoring the strength of your jaw. Once completely healed, your implants can be placed. A successful ridge augmentation helps to greatly increase the success of your dental implant treatment.
Bone Grafts for a Ridge Augmentation
There are a few different types of bone grafts that may be performed during your ridge augmentation. Common types of bone grafts include:
A ridge augmentation restores missing bone mass from your jaw, giving the bone back its height and width, as well as its strength. Call Treasure Valley Oral & Facial Surgery at (208) 994-6227 today for more information and to find out if a ridge augmentation is right for you.