Bone grafting is a regenerative treatment option for patients who have lost quality and quantity of supporting bone tissue as a result of periodontal disease. This procedure is often needed before dental implants can be placed. It also helps protect the teeth from bacteria, trauma and further degeneration.
The Bone Graft Procedure
During the bone graft procedure, the gums will be separated from the teeth so that the periodontist can gain access to the tooth roots and underlying bone. The roots will be thoroughly cleaned and any holes or damaged areas of the bone will be filled with a graft material. A barrier will be created to protect the bone. Once the graft is in place, the gums will be reattached to the area with sutures. The graft used during this procedure may come from the patient's own body, a cadaver, cow bone or synthetic material. The most effective results are often achieved when the patient's own bone is used for the graft.
Recovery After a Bone Graft
After the bone graft procedure, patients may experience swelling and pain for several days. It is important for patients to keep their mouth as clean as possible while the bone graft heals. The patient will return to the periodontist's office about 7 to 10 days after the procedure for a follow-up so the mouth can be evaluated to ensure proper healing. Over time, new bone and soft tissue will develop in the treated area to help firmly reattach the tooth to the jaw, significantly reducing the patient's risk of tooth loss and reversing the effects of periodontal disease.