July 25, 2022

The Link Between Bone Grafts and Dental Implants

Tooth loss can be the result of tooth decay, plaque, tartar buildup, gum disease, and poor oral hygiene practices. Dental implants can help patients who’ve experienced tooth loss restore their smile without using dentures.

In the past, patients who have experienced tooth loss have required bone grafting to withstand and support dental implants. 

Bone grafting is a surgical procedure used for patients with missing or diminished jawbone density, either with a synthetic bone material from the patient’s own body. 

If the patient's bone is used in the grafting procedure, the area it’s taken from will naturally regenerate. Bone grafting can be a lengthy and invasive process, often anxiety-inducing for many patients. This article will explore the link between bone grafts and dental implants and why many patients are now looking for new ways to restore their smiles. 

Which Patients Have Historically Required Bone Grafting for Dental Implants?

Patients who have lost bone volume and whose jawbones no longer can support implants are often offered bone grafting as a solution. 

Bone loss can be either due to atrophy in the jaw bone where the tooth is missing or weakened bone density. Patients who’ve had tooth loss can see a deterioration in their jawbone, as the root of the tooth is what stimulates healthy bone regrowth. Patients who’ve been without a tooth will experience their bone growth diminish or stop altogether, which can affect a dentist's ability to place a dental implant. 

Between the ages of 25-50, the average person has stable bone density due to their bone formation being at the same rate as their bone breakdown. However, after the age of 50, resorptions or diminishment of the bones begins to move faster than the new formation can take place. This generally affects women more than men and has been associated with menopause. 

Another thing that can negatively impact bone density and can lead patients to require bone grafting is calcium deficiency. Generally, these are caused by an eating disorder, poor diet, or being underweight, which will similarly affect bone density in both men and women. 

Why Bone Grafts Are Used for Dental Implants 

A bone graft is used to essentially increase the volume of bone in the jaw to the point where it can withstand and support a dental implant effectively. The implants fuse with the bone and create a foundation that keeps the dental implant securely in place. This is why the bone graft has to fully heal over several months before the patient can have their implants placed, except for the All-on-4® treatment, where the bridges can be placed within 24 hours of surgery. 

bone grafts and teeth implants



What Does Bone Grafting Entail?

There are different forms of bone grafting available to patients who need dental implants. 

Ridge Augmentation refers to placing bone graft material within the tooth’s socket. The recovery process is lengthy, around 6-9 months, as the material must fuse with the natural bone. 

A Sinus Lift procedure is for patients who need implants on the upper teeth but don’t have enough sinus wall bone density or strength to hold the implants on their own. This bone grafting form can take up to a year of recovery for patients. With both forms of bone grafting, the patient will experience mild to moderate pain, discomfort, and swelling. 

How Next Smile Australia is Helping Patients 

When patients want to avoid bone grafting but don’t have the bone dentistry to support implants, they can opt for the All-on-4® treatment with zygomatic implants. This innovative and effective method implants small titanium fixtures directly into the upper jawbone depending on the location of tooth loss. 

What makes the All-on-4® treatment so unique is that it can replace a complete set of teeth, also referred to as a “full-arch rehabilitation”, with only two implants in the front and two angulated implants placed in the back. The method avoids the need for bone grafting altogether, speeds up recovery time, and can be done in a single session. 

bone grafts and teeth implants

What Makes Zygomatic Implants And The All-on-4® Treatment Successful?

Zygomatic implants allow those with diminished jawbones to still receive dental implants. This is because the zygoma is longer than a conventional implant allowing an experienced dentist to anchor it to the underside of the cheekbone through the patient’s sinus. This keeps the implant securely anchored to a bone that can withstand it. The All-on-4® treatment works in tandem with these implants to offer patients a complete set of teeth without needing an implant for every tooth. 

This method has proved effective and is far superior to the old ways of teeth implants for many reasons. The All-on-4® treatment is an innovative technology that allows the dentist more control in placing implants to avoid poor bone density areas and place them wherever is best, depending on each individual's mouth. Through the All-on-4® treatment, the entire mouth bridge is secure and supported, allowing the patient to have prosthetic teeth without bone grafts. 

What Patients Can Expect When Choosing The All-on-4® Treatment 

A tailor-made solution 

As every patient is different, so are their dental implant needs. With this method, an experienced dentist will place the implants at an angle, allowing them more control and more options for angulation to reach the areas with higher bone density. Dentists can tailor the implant placement to each patient. 

The experienced dentists at Next Smile Australia can avoid the areas of a patient’s jawbone that may have poor bone quality and securely place the dental implants that suit them best. 

Expedited healing process 

When bone grafting is required for dental implants, the recovery time is lengthy and leaves the patients without teeth for months. 

With the All-on-4® treatment and no bone grafting, the recovery is much faster with less healing time required. Patients can be fitted with their new teeth one day after the All-on-4® surgery. 

This is great for patients who are anxious to have a beautiful smile and don’t want to wait for months. 

Fewer appointments

The All-on-4® treatment is a minimalist approach to full arch rehabilitation as it only requires four implants to give patients a brand new beautiful smile. 

Because there are fewer implants, the treatment requires less time spent in the dentist's office. A major benefit of the treatment is that patients can get a complete set of teeth in a single visit. In contrast, the older, more antique dental implant techniques can take several appointments over many months. 

If you are a patient who has had tooth loss, either due to bone density issues or decay, you should consider visiting the experienced staff of dentists at Next Smile Australia

Our dentists are some of the best in the industry and have all trained under Dr Paulo Malo, who pioneered the All-on-4® treatment. 

They have extensive protocols that provide an ultra-high success rate of 98%, that’s been clinically proven over 25 years of data. 

Patients no longer have to experience the long and invasive bone grafting procedure to get the dental implants they need to replace tooth loss when visiting Next Smile Australia.