Whenever a person loses a tooth to infection or perhaps periodontal disease, one very good solution is to have a dental implant surgically placed. An implant is actually an artificial tooth root which is inserted into the jaw by a highly qualified dental surgeon, so that it can provide the foundation for a replacement tooth or bridge.
Dental implants look completely natural and feel normal to the recipient, and after installation, they function exactly like normal teeth would. Dental implants can also help to preserve your adjacent teeth, because they don’t count on those teeth for any kind of support. It is sometimes necessary to undergo bone grafting prior to getting a dental implant, and here is what you can expect when bone-grafting is necessary.
Prior to Bone Grafting
The first stage of the process is to remove the damaged tooth, and then prepare the jawbone for the surgery to come. This process involves replacing or regenerating any bone which has been lost, and it also helps to maintain the proper contours of the face, so the person looks normal. When teeth have been lost because of some kind of trauma or injury, or due to tooth decay, there is often some level of bone loss which has occurred, and the bone in the area around the jaw begins to deteriorate. Bone grafting will produce a much more solid foundation for a dental implant in these cases.
During Bone Grafting
The process of bone-grafting involves the removal of some section of bone from a part of the patient’s body, either from the jaw or elsewhere, and then transplanting it into the jawbone itself. It is also possible that any needed bone could be obtained from external sources, such as a tissue bank. When bone-grafting is done, it generally requires the passage of several months before the transplanted bone can grow a sufficient level of new bone, so that it can support the placement of a dental implant. Once you have bone-grafting surgery done, it will therefore be followed by long period of bone growth and waiting, until your actual dental implant can be placed.
After Bone Grafting
Once your jawbone has healed after bone grafting, it will be possible to begin the process of installing a dental implant. This will begin with the emplacement of a titanium dental implant into the jawbone, and this too requires the passage of several months in order to achieve complete healing in the affected area. When the area has healed, an abutment will be placed into the jaw, after which additional time must pass in order for the soft tissue around the area to heal sufficiently.
At this point, it will be possible to take a mold of the teeth and the jawbone, and it will then be possible to begin the procedure of inserting the tooth. As you might guess, because of the extensive periods necessary for healing during this entire process, bone grafting and dental implants can take a considerable amount of time.
After each surgical phase of the process, it’s possible that patients will experience some level of discomfort. For instance, swelling of the skin or gums, some level of bruising, potential minor bleeding, and a general soreness in the affected area. However, all of these side effects will quickly diminish within a few days, so that a typical patient is never inconvenienced for any length of time. It will also be necessary in the post bone-grafting phase to limit the types of foods consumed by the patient, because it is highly desirable that only soft foods be eaten during the healing process.
Skilled Bone Grafting Specialists
The process of bone-grafting, and the procedures necessary before and after bone-grafting, can only be performed by a highly skilled and qualified oral surgeon. In South Florida, that person is Dr. Andrew Slavin, the Chief Oral Surgeon at Good Samaritan Dental Implant Institute, and a specialist who has been board-certified several times already during his illustrious career. When you want to have great faith and trust in the person performing oral surgery on you, it’s best to choose someone who has demonstrated a superior level of skill and knowledge in the field over the course of many years.