Following tooth extraction which could be the result of periodontal disease, fracture roots, abscess formation etc. the bone and gum around the removed root starts to shrink away. Research has shown that up to 40-60% of the remaining bone shrinks away within 2-3years.
This leaves areas which areas which are unsightly because of the reduction of hard (bone) and soft tissue (gum) volume. This results in less than ideal final crown or bridgework in terms of size and shape compared to the adjacent natural teeth. We can offer rebuilding of this soft and hard tissue as we have had years of experience in providing these sorts of procedures.
Gum grafting and bone graft treatment before dental implant placement
Should a patient request dental implants to replace these teeth than bone grafting may have to be done prior to any implants placed. The replaced teeth look odd as it maybe much longer and the gum around this tooth will also look sunken in. A procedure called ridge augmentation restores the natural hard and soft tissue profiles so that the replaced teeth look much more in harmony with the natural teeth. There are many different techniques of ridge augmentation and the actual procedure used will depend on the volume of tissue lost and also final restorative therapy to replace the missing teeth. This procedure can be carried out under local anaesthetic and depending on the size of the area to be filled can either be done with small bone graft or a soft tissue graft taken from the roof of mouth. You will be given a choice of materials to be used in the bone graft.
The bone graft can either be taken from the patient (back of mouth) or usually from an either animal source (Bovine Bio-Oss) or synthetic material (Straumann bone ceramic. The bone graft helps to provide a stable base for the dental implants and gum tissue by bonding with the natural bone over a period of several months. After it has matured then the bridgework or implant therapy can be carried out. The healing period can vary and the success rates are very high but smokers are advised to refrain from smoking for at least 1 week prior to the procedure and for 3 weeks afterward for the best results. In some more advanced cases both hard and soft tissue grafts are used together.