What Does it Mean to Need a Bone Graft?

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Despite the fact that the bones in our mouth (such as our teeth and jaw) are very strong, there are still unfortunately many things that can go wrong. Our teeth can be knocked-out and our jaw tissue can diminish and loose its strength. In this latter case, our North Hollywood dentist might recommend a bone graft.

Bone grafts are usually needed after a patient has lost a tooth, whether due to accident or extraction. This is because the jaw bone tissue is no longer stimulated by the tooth or teeth in that area, and therefore begins to resorb.

In order to replace the tooth or teeth with implants, or to correct the shape of the face, a higher density in the jaw bone is needed. A bone graft can accomplish this in one of three ways. Most commonly, bone is taken from elsewhere in your jaw or your body, such as the hip. Some patients prefer synthetic material to replace jaw bone tissue. Donor tissue is also an option.

The recovery process is fairly routine. You will be given instructions and antibiotics, and told to avoid certain foods. The new tissue or material will fuse with your jaw bone tissue over the course of several months and stimulate growth, at which point you will become a candidate for dental implants.

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