Are you missing teeth? Dental implants are one of the best dental treatments for missing teeth, but they may require additional surgery known as bone grafting prior to implant surgery. Bone grafting is designed to increase the bone density and strength of the jaw bone, so it can effectively hold a dental implant. Dental implants look and feel just like a traditional tooth, making them one of the most sought-after dental treatments for patients seeking a long-term solution. Dr. Hoerner will examine your bone density and overall oral health to determine if you are a candidate for dental implants. If it is found that you need bone grafting, we will discuss the treatment and create a patient treatment program designed specifically for you.
What is a Dental Implant?
A dental implant has two parts, a metal post that is surgically posited within the jaw bone, and an abutment that screws into the post. The metal post will bond with the jaw bone, essentially become a “root” like the rest of your teeth have. Once the abutment and post have bonded and healed with the bone, we will place a crown on the abutment, giving you a restored tooth.
Do I Need Bone Grafting?
How do we determine if you need bone grafting? It comes down to the amount of bone and how dense it is. If we find the jaw bone is too thin or it is too soft, we will recommend bone grafting. The bone has to be strong enough to hold the implant in place, which can be challenging if you do have problems with the bone density. Bone grafting will require bone from another area of the body, or from donated bone, to be added to the jaw bone. It can take several months for the bone to bond with the donated bone. During the healing time, we will x-ray the area and Dr. Hoerner will examine it to make sure the bone is fusing together.
It is possible that you will only need a small procedure for the bone to bond with new bone and become strong. Other patients may require multiple bone grafts prior to dental implant surgery. Most patients need at least 6 millimeters or 1/4 inch of healthy bone for a dental implant. However, the required amount can change based on individual patient needs. Ideally, 8 millimeters of bone is more than enough for a patient to be considered a candidate for dental implant surgery.
Once the bone is strong enough, we can start the dental implant process. The dental implant procedure normally takes a few months to complete as we need to surgically place the titanium screw into the jaw bone and allow it to heal. The jaw bone needs to fuse with the titanium screw to ensure the implant will be strong and be a permanent solution for a missing tooth. As with any surgical procedure, we recommend contacting our office and discussing the surgery, risks, requirements, and post-operative instructions. Contact Bismarck Advanced Dental and Implants at 701-390-1920 to schedule a free consultation for dental implant surgery.