Bone Loss Treatment
Expert regeneration of lost bone
Your upper and lower teeth are anchored in a platform of jawbone known as the alveolar ridge. The teeth are rooted inside sockets along the ridge.
Full jaw bone structure is needed to keep your teeth firmly held in position and strong. It is also needed to maintain your normal face shape.
Skilled bone regeneration specialists
Dr. Hodges is highly trained and skilled at regenerating lost or missing bone structure so your teeth are anchored firmly and your face shape is preserved. Dr. Hodges also teaches bone regeneration techniques to other periodontists at seminars and workshops around the country.
Causes of bone loss in the jaw
- Bone loss in the jaw occurs as a result of severe gum disease and when a tooth is lost. It can also occur when teeth are misaligned or injured.
- When there is periodontal disease, bacteria gradually eats away the jawbone surrounding the tooth, and eats away the ligaments that attach the tooth to the bone.
- The bone in your jaw needs stimulation from your chewing and biting to maintain its volume and density. When you lose a tooth, this stimulation is lost, and the bone surrounding that tooth gradually dissolves. The longer the area of bone receives no stimulation, the more bone is lost.
- A misaligned tooth can act much like a lost tooth, as it can be positioned where it does not make contact with the opposing tooth on the other arch. There is no bite pressure. The stimulation needed to maintain the bone structure is missing, and the bone dissolves around the misaligned tooth.
Consequences of bone loss
When you lose a tooth, bone loss begins right away. In the first year after losing a tooth, 25% or more of the bone where the tooth had been is reabsorbed back into the body. This bone loss continues on, until eventually, only the hard underlying bone is left.
When many teeth, or all your teeth, are lost, this bone loss can have dramatic effects. The lower third of your facial structure starts to become shorter and appears to collapse, your lips become thin and recede into your face, and you develop wrinkles around the mouth.
Dentures do not provide the stimulation necessary to maintain healthy bone density and volume. They actually accelerate bone loss.
Bone grafting regenerates lost bone
Bone grafting is a procedure where Dr. Hodges will take bone material from one source and transplant it into the area of missing bone to develop new bone tissue. The bone graft material can come from a human tissue bank, from animal sources or synthetic material. In some cases, we also use a tiny amount of bone tissue from your chin or your jaw near the joint.
The bone graft material does not actually become the new bone. It stimulates the production of new bone at the grafting site and acts as a platform around which the new bone forms. The bone graft material dissolves as the new bone fills the grafting site.
Advanced technology for minimally invasive grafting
We use leading-edge technology making our bone grafting procedures minimally invasive and more efficient with faster healing times.
Ultrasonic surgery device for gentle cutting
Sometimes we need to prepare the bone to make it ready for the graft. For gentle cutting, without affecting the surrounding tissues, we use our Piezoelectric surgical device. This devices uses ultrasonic waves that are set to cut only bone and not the surrounding soft tissue. This reduces trauma, prevents bleeding and speeds healing time.
We place plates or membranes around the bone graft material to hold it in place and separate the graft from surrounding tissues. These dissolve into the body along with the graft material.
Growth proteins speed up healing
We use growth proteins taken from human blood platelets or amniotic fluid and apply them to the bone graft tissue. These growth proteins speed bone regeneration as well as prevent swelling and infection.
When do we do bone grafting ?
We use bone grafting to regenerate needed bone for tooth support, and to preserve the shape and strength of your jaw bone. It is often needed to build up the supporting bone structure for dental implants.
Preserving a tooth
A tooth can have bone loss around it which needs to be regenerated to give the tooth adequate support. We can graft bone material into the area of deficiency. This will cause new bone to grow which will provide stronger support for the tooth.
Ridge preservation after tooth extraction
After a tooth is extracted, it is sometimes necessary to rebuild the bone structure under the tooth that has been lost so the adjacent teeth do not deteriorate, the jaw line is preserved, and the site is set up for a dental implant if needed. Dr. Hodges will clean out any infection at the site as necessary, will place the graft in the tooth socket and secure it by a membrane and suture.
Preparing for dental implants
To place a dental implant securely, it must be surrounded by adequate supporting bone. Where the implant site has inadequate bone structure, we do a bone graft to regenerate the bone needed for support.
There are sinuses just above your upper arch. Bone loss under your upper molars often eats away at the bone that forms the sinus floor. When upper molars have been removed, the pressure inside the sinus cavity will cause the bone at the bottom of the cavity to dissolve. These factors cause the sinus floor to drop and the remaining bone forming the upper arch to be shallow.
When an implant has to be placed, the bone must be deep enough to support it. If the bone in your upper arch under your sinus cavity is too shallow for implant placement, we can build the depth of bone back by placing a bone graft at the bottom of the sinus cavity and restore the bone’s depth.
The procedure that accomplishes this is the sinus lift. The bottom membrane of the sinus cavity is gently lifted up and bone graft material is placed underneath the raised membrane. The graft regenerates new bone of adequate depth and the implant is placed securely.
Aesthetic ridge augmentation
The ridge of bone supporting your teeth starts to sink at the point where a tooth has been lost. This sunken area can become visible under a dental bridge and appear as an unsightly hole under your teeth.
The doctor will place a bone graft under your ridge line at the point of the missing tooth and build back your ridge to normal height and width. Your smile looks natural and shows no deterioration of the jaw.
Cone beam 3D CT scanner makes bone grafting more efficient
Our cone beam CT scanner produces a three-dimensional image of your entire tooth and jaw structure that can be inspected from any angle and at magnification. The image shows the amount and density of the bone at any point surrounding your teeth.
Using these images we know ahead of time where grafting will be needed. We also find the points adequate bone volume that will sometimes allow us to place implants without the need of bone grafting.
To make an appointment, call our Rockwall 972-771-8640 or Paris 903-785-4832 office, or click here to request an appointment online.