Bone grafts are frequently necessary in cases where bone has been lost to trauma or disease, or where a tooth has been removed a long time ago, leading to the jaw bone to reabsorb. They can be used to build up areas of the jaw where the bone isn’t thick enough, or to strengthen it in places where it is too soft.
The surgery is very commonplace, and extremely safe, but many patients in Houston do have concerns when they first hear they may need a bone graft, and the most common is about tooth bone graft safety.
Tooth Bone Graft Safety and Materials
There are several different types of materials that can be used for bone grafts, and these include using an artificial bone substitute which is a mineral graft material, using processed animal bone, using human donor bone, or using bone from another site in your body.
All of these choices are very effective and very safe. All the materials used are rigorously tested and sterilized to ensure complete safety for patients. The best material is obviously your own bone. If a mineral graft material is used then this doesn’t remain in the body; it is gradually absorbed as it is replaced with new bone grown by your body.
If your dentist in Houston suggests using some sort of donor bone then this will have undergone testing similar to that used to prepare blood donations. We will have ensured it comes from a highly reputable and well managed national tissue bank, so the risk of any type of infection being transmitted in this way is minute.
The healing time required for tooth bone grafts can vary quite a lot depending on the individual case. Sometimes the amount of bone required may be fairly minimal, and can be placed at the same time as the implant, but other cases may require the bone to be placed in a separate surgery. In such cases the bone will need to be left to heal for several months before the implant can be placed.
The actual surgery is relatively straightforward, although it is important to choose an experienced oral surgeon in Houston to ensure it is done correctly. You’ll be given precise instructions on how to care for the operation site, and we may prescribe antibiotics and painkillers to help the healing process. A bone graft can take between six and twelve months to fully heal, after which time you will be able to have the implant placed.
Although tooth bone graft safety is extremely good, there is always a small risk that the bone may be rejected by your body, but this is pretty rare and is usually due to infection or to the graft becoming displaced in some way. If you choose an experienced oral surgeon in Houston then this is very unlikely to happen, and if caught early enough any infection can generally be easily and effectively treated with antibiotics. In such cases it is usually possible to have another graft placed at a later date. Having a bone graft can greatly improve the longevity and stability of an implant, and although the process may seem to take a while to complete the results are well worth the effort.