Bone grafting stands as a cornerstone in modern dental and periodontal care, offering a solution to one of the most challenging consequences of oral health issues – the loss or damage of jawbone tissue. This procedure is particularly relevant for patients grappling with the impacts of gum disease, which can lead to significant deterioration of the jawbone.

Why Bone Grafting?

  1. Combatting Jawbone Deterioration: Gum disease, if left untreated, can aggressively erode the jawbone. This erosion not only affects oral health but also alters facial structure and the ability to perform essential functions like chewing and speaking.
  2. Restoring Oral Health and Functionality: Bone grafting is not just about aesthetics; it’s crucial for restoring oral functionality, maintaining alignment of remaining teeth, and preparing the jaw for potential future dental implants.

The Science Behind Bone Grafting

  • Biological Basis: The procedure is grounded in the body’s innate ability to regenerate bone. By introducing graft materials, the body is stimulated to repair and rebuild the lost bone.
  • Technological Advances: The field of bone grafting has seen significant technological advancements, with the development of new materials and methods that enhance the body’s natural healing process.

The Importance of Bone Grafting in Dental Implantation

  • Foundation for Implants: For those considering dental implants, healthy and sufficient bone structure is essential. Bone grafting plays a critical role in ensuring that the jawbone is robust and adequately shaped to support these implants.
  • Long-term Success: The success of dental implants heavily relies on the quality and quantity of the jawbone. Bone grafting thus becomes a key preparatory step for many patients seeking dental implants.

Procedure Overview

1. Initial Consultation and Diagnosis

  • Patient Evaluation: The procedure begins with a thorough evaluation of the patient’s oral health. This includes assessing the extent of gum disease and the degree of jawbone damage.
  • Imaging and Analysis: Advanced imaging techniques like X-rays or CT scans are used to precisely locate and understand the extent of bone loss.

2. Preparation for the Procedure

  • Patient Education: Drs. Roll and Williams discuss the procedure, potential risks, and expected outcomes with the patient.
  • Treatment Planning: A customized treatment plan is developed, considering the patient’s specific needs and the severity of bone loss.
  • Oral Hygiene Optimization: Prior to the procedure, patients may be advised to follow certain oral hygiene practices to ensure optimal conditions for successful grafting.

3. The Surgical Procedure

  • Anesthesia: Local anesthesia is administered to ensure patient comfort during the procedure.
  • Gum Lifting: The gum tissue is carefully lifted to expose the underlying bone defect.
  • Cleaning and Preparing the Site: The tooth root and surrounding area are meticulously cleaned to remove any bacteria or debris.
  • Placement of Graft Materials: The chosen graft material, which could be autograft (from the patient), allograft (donor bone), xenograft (animal bone), or synthetic alternatives, is placed into the bone defect.
  • Application of Biologically Active Agents: If appropriate, biologically active gels and growth factors are applied to the graft to stimulate and accelerate bone regeneration.
  • Securing the Graft: The graft material is secured in place, sometimes using a membrane to prevent gum tissue from growing into the bone area.
  • Gum Tissue Closure: The gum tissue is carefully repositioned and sutured to cover the graft site.

4. Postoperative Care

  • Immediate Care: Patients receive instructions for care immediately following the surgery, including managing discomfort and swelling.
  • Follow-Up Visits: Regular follow-up visits are scheduled to monitor healing and the success of the graft.
  • Oral Hygiene Maintenance: Continued emphasis on oral hygiene is crucial for the success of the bone graft.

5. Recovery and Healing

  • Healing Process: The healing process can vary, typically ranging from a few weeks to several months, depending on the complexity of the graft and the individual’s health.
  • Monitoring Bone Regeneration: Follow-up imaging studies may be conducted to evaluate the new bone growth and integration.

6. Final Assessment and Further Treatment

  • Assessment of Graft Success: Once healing is complete, Drs. Roll and Williams assess the success of the graft and determine if additional treatments, such as dental implants, can proceed.
  • Long-term Care and Maintenance: Long-term care strategies are discussed to maintain oral health and the longevity of the treatment results.

Bone Grafts Post Tooth Extraction

  1. Post-Extraction Bone Shrinkage: Following tooth extraction, the jawbone can shrink significantly, especially in the upper jaw—up to 25% within the first three months.
  2. Grafting to Prevent Shrinkage:
    • Immediate Grafting Post Extraction: To combat this shrinkage, grafting is done immediately after tooth extraction, especially if dental implants are planned.
    • Reduction in Shrinkage: This proactive approach can reduce bone shrinkage from 25% to about 8%, helping to preserve the jawbone for future implant placement.

Advanced Bone Building Techniques for Severe Bone Loss

In cases where extensive bone loss has occurred, making dental implant placement challenging, advanced bone-building techniques are employed:

  • Particulate Grafts: These involve small particles of bone or bone substitute material.
  • Block Grafts: These use larger, solid sections of bone or bone substitute.
  • Gem 21: A specific graft material known for its effectiveness.
  • Sinus Lift Procedures: Used especially in upper jaw cases where additional bone height is required.
  • Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP): A technique involving the patient’s own blood plasma, rich in growth factors, to enhance bone growth and healing.

Bone grafting at Pinnacle Center – Dental Implants & Periodontics is a sophisticated and crucial procedure for oral restoration, particularly in cases of gum disease and post-tooth extraction. By employing a variety of advanced techniques and materials, Drs. Roll and Williams ensure effective treatment and improved outcomes for patients requiring dental implants and other periodontal interventions.

Regenerating bone by Periodontist in Pittsburgh PA

Before Treatment – Area of bone damage outlined with red dots

Regenerating bone by Periodontist in Pittsburgh PA

After Treatment – New bone appears white

request my appointment


Visit our office in Pittsburgh, Two Minutes From The Mall At Robinson!!

6200 Steubenville Pike Suite 201
McKees Rocks, PA 15136

Office Hours:

Monday: 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Tuesday: 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Wednesday: 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Thursday: 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Friday: Closed

call us