Bone Grafting for Dental Implants: Then and Now

These days, bone grafting is seen as an important procedure in dentistry. It is also known however, that as recently as the 1980s, missing teeth were replaced with removable dentures that helped patients eat and speak but looked fake. Since then, thanks to dental implants and bone grafting procedures in North York dental clinics, developments have meant that even people with weak jawbones can receive realistic-looking replacements.

Why Is Bone Grafting Necessary?

To receive a dental implant, your jawbone needs to be strong enough to hold a titanium post in place. The presence of a working tooth keeps your jawbone strong, but a lost tooth leads to atrophy over time. The more teeth you are missing, the more severe is the jawbone atrophy.

Jawbone Restoration In The Past

In the past, complicated procedures were necessary to restore a jawbone. This could even involve replanting a patient’s rib. Often, such action was necessary to both restore the function of the jawbone and prevent fractures. However, even in these cases, it was impossible to repair the jawbone sufficiently for implants.

Bone Grafting Today

Whenever possible, dentists take action to prevent the need for bone grafting entirely, such as by providing patients with an implant soon after extracting a tooth. In cases where bone grafting is necessary, it tends to be minimal and the procedure takes place at the dental clinic.

Better still, dentists no longer need to take large quantities of the patient’s own bone. Most bone grafts are using bovine (cow) bone. This requires just the sterilized mineral content — the organic material is removed prior to the graft. The bovine bone stops surrounding tissues in the jawbone from collapsing. The graft is combined with guided tissue regeneration, which leads the jawbone to resorb the bovine bone and replace it with native bone.

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