Dental Implants: How Bone Grafting Helps People with Poor Bone Density


DentalNot all patients who need to undergo dental implant treatment have enough bone density or width to fit the implant’s titanium screw. This does not mean that you cannot be a candidate for treatment, though. Thanks to bone grafting, you can fix the bone insufficiency in your mouth and get a chance at a beautiful smile again.

Why Do You Need Bone Grafting? and noted that poor bone density may affect the stability of the dental implants. If the screw has a loose grip on the bone, the implants become unstable and might not last long. Here are some reasons people do not have enough bone density:

  • Facial injury or trauma, especially to the jaw area
  • Wearing dentures for a long time
  • Gum disease and defects while the tooth is developing
  • Dental caries and infection
  • Not replacing missing teeth immediately

Where Do Dentists Get the Bone?

Dentists often use the bone of their patient’s chin or ramus (back part of the lower jaw) for bone grafting. If these are not enough, then they might resort to getting the bone from the hip or tibia (shinbone) since their marrows contain bone-forming cells. The only disadvantage is that you have to stay in the hospital and have general anaesthesia.

Other options are bones from human cadavers or cows and synthetic materials, like bone morphogenetic protein-2 (BMP-2). BMP-2 helps stimulate certain body cells, so they can turn into bone without the need for grafting.

After the procedure, dentists let patients wait about four to nine months before putting in the implant. This is to make sure that the added bone has combined well with the existing bone.

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Some people have enough healthy natural bone to support dental implants, while others do not. Fortunately, there are procedures available for you to become a good candidate for implant treatment.