Bone Grafting or Bone Augmentation (adding bone) is a procedure where either your own bone or processed bone are introduced into your jaw to strengthen the areas that are have either lost bone due to gum disease or from loss of teeth. This usually is indicated for patients that are preparing to receive dental implants in the near future.
The graft material you receive can either be your own natural bone or processed bone. The common areas where bone is harvested is your shin, hip or back part of your jaw. The dentist will make an incision on your shin about the size of the graft material that will be needed in your jaw. This will be harvested and delivered into the area of your jaw where it will be secured with little screws. The donor site is cleaned and sealed back with a couple of stitches. It usually takes a couple of months for the graft to totally adapt to the site before it is ready to receive an implant.
Some patients shy away from having to undergo two procedures for grafting due to the discomfort and healing time involved. These patients opt for the processed bone option which could be from a cadaver, a cow or from synthetic materials that stimulate bone production in your body. There are several different ways to graft bone and your dentist will thoroughly discuss the best options for you.