Once a tooth is lost, progressive bone loss that may result can carry serious consequences. Without the tooth providing natural stimulation via the force of chewing, the bone will become weak and lose mass because fortifying growth can no longer occur. This can lead to a cascade of problems including bone loss on adjacent teeth, and if multiple teeth are missing, the facial structures can sag resulting in a look of premature aging.
You’ll want to address a missing tooth as soon as possible because when progressive bone loss happens, it can limit your options when it comes to tooth replacement. Thankfully, with our advanced bone grafting techniques, we can help to prevent bone loss from occurring or reconstruct bone in cases where it is already reduced.
Grafting a socket at the time of tooth extraction is the least invasive and most predictable way to help prevent bone loss and prepare the area for a future dental implant. This involves adding bone to the site where the tooth is extracted and covering the site with a collagen barrier. Other techniques are used to replace bone when the tooth has been missing for a longer period of time.
Bone grafts work by taking bone from one of four potential sources: the patient himself or herself, a human donor, animal bone, or a synthetic material. Our surgeons will determine which of these is right for you. It is important to note that any of these sources is thoroughly sanitized and very safe to use for this purpose. Most commonly, we use bone that comes from either a human donor source or an animal source, which avoids having to take bone from the patient. With this type of graft, the bone acts like a scaffold on which your own bone can grow, eventually replacing the donor bone. The area of the missing tooth is now ready for a dental implant to fill the gap.
If you would like to speak to our surgeons about bone grafting or dental implants, call our helpful team at Loudoun Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery in Ashburn and Leesburg, Virginia. Phone: 703-729-8700.