A dental implant gives you a replacement tooth (or set of replacement teeth) that looks, feels, and functions just like your natural teeth. But you need a strong, healthy jawbone to support the implant. If your bone needs strengthening before you get your implant, Robert Tingilian, DDS, Tom Shanakian, DDS, and the team at Comfort Care Dental offer bone grafting at their offices in Glendale and Sherman Oaks, California. To find out if bone grafting is right for you, call the office closest to you or make an appointment online today.
Bone Grafting Q & A
What is a dental implant?
A dental implant is a type of replacement tooth. While other replacement teeth stabilize in your mouth by connecting to abutting teeth (in the case of dental bridges) or via a plastic framework (in the case of dentures), a dental implant takes root in your mouth just like a natural tooth.
When you choose a dental implant, your Comfort Care Dental dentist places a metal rod in your jawbone. Once this rod osseointegrates, or fuses with your jawbone, it can serve as the root for a single replacement tooth or a set of multiple replacement teeth.
Many people choose dental implants because, with proper care, the implant should last a lifetime, looking and feeling just like a natural tooth the entire time.
Why would I need bone grafting before a dental implant?
The metal rod that serves as the root for your replacement tooth needs to anchor sturdily in your mouth. If your jawbone isn’t wide or tall enough, it won’t provide a sufficient foundation to stabilize the dental implant.
In these cases, the Comfort Care Dental team often recommends bone grafting. During a bone graft, they add bone particulate (essentially ground-up inorganic bone) along your jawbone. Over the coming months, your body’s own bone cells build on that bone particulate, extending and strengthening your jawbone.
If another dental professional has told you that you’re not a candidate for a dental implant because you lack jawbone strength, bone grafting could be right for you.
What should I expect after bone grafting?
After bone grafting, expect to wait 4-6 months for your body to assimilate the bone particulate and build new, healthy bone along your jaw. In most cases, that means you need to wait about half a year before your Comfort Care Dental dentist can place your dental implant.
If you need only a minor bone graft, though, you might be able to skip that waiting period. Your dentist might be able to complete the bone grafting as they place your implant, shortening your path to a sturdy, natural-feeling replacement tooth.
If you’re interested in a dental implant but you’ve been told your jaw can’t support it, don’t wait to ask the Comfort Care Dental team about bone grafting. Call the office nearest you or schedule your bone grafting consultation online today.