We frequently discover that our patients’ bone loss is not as severe as they have been led to believe in the past. Because we use the latest short implants, we can often avoid the need for bone-grafting.
When teeth are lost, sometimes the bone around them is lost as well. If so, this may need to be built back if implants are to be placed. There are various types of bone augmentation that may be required in different situations, and if you need one of these we will explain to you why and how this is carried out. Most implant treatments do not require bone augmentation, however, where there is a lack of bone, all of our surgeons are extremely well trained for this type of specialised procedure.
Guided Bone Augmentation
This is carried out at the time of implant placement and you will be unaware of the procedure, apart from taking a few more minutes of surgery time. Special materials are added around the implant where there are small deficiencies in your own bone. This will help to maintain the look of the implant crown where it comes out of the gum. There are various material options to use for this technique, and we have chosen our favoured materials following careful research. These are man-made bone substitutes so there is no need for us ever to use animal products.
The bones that make up your face are hollow and contain air spaces known as sinuses. The sinuses that sit above your upper back teeth are known as the maxillary sinuses. When an upper posterior tooth is lost, the floor of the maxillary sinus drops down into the space formerly occupied by the root of the lost tooth. In order to place an implant, it is sometimes necessary to put the sinus floor back up to where it originally was by adding a bone substitute. This procedure is called a sinus floor bone augmentation or a ‘sinus lift’.
Though exceptionally rarely required, when a lot of bone has been lost from the front part of the upper jaw, it is occasionally necessary to build this back using a block of bone from the patient. This is an extremely rare condition and one for which we usually seek an alternative treatment. If you are concerned about this procedure, do come in and discuss it with us.