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Can Patients With Severe Bone Loss Get Dental Implants?

We get questions asking “Can I still get a dental implant if I don’t have enough bone” constantly. The good news is, you can! We, Guerrino Dentistry, have solutions that can help you regain your confidence in your smile. In this post, we explained 4 types of bone grafts that can help you get your implant(s).

Bone graft using your own bone

The first option is using bone from your own body. Also known as autografts, we believe that this is the best bone source to perform a bone graft as using the living tissue in your body, with all the cells that will transform to bone-forming cells. These bone-forming cells primarily restore the bone formation and heal the problem area. Usually, we extract bone from the your chin or the back parts of your jaw. It is because these are inessential parts of your body that can provide the bone for bone grafts. However, one factor to take into consideration is that this requires an invasive and complicated surgery. If you are not looking for solutions that require surgical removal of bone from other sites of your body, we have other options below.

Bone graft using donated human bone

The second option involves using another person’s bone, called allografts. The bone is to be processed first, where it undergoes demineralization, which is the process of removing mineral matter and freeze-drying to remove the water and preserve the bone. These two processes ensure that the donated bone is free of any transmitting disease as well as retaining its cell-forming properties that are needed for this allograft process. Similarly to autografts, the cells will restore and heal. The difference between autografts and allografts is that allografts does not need surgical procedures, and you will heal faster.

Bone graft using animal bone

Xenografts are using bone from animal sources, typically from cows. However, there are risks you will face as the bone is from a different species. As compared to autografts and allografts, the bone formation will be weaker, and it will take longer to heal. The good thing is, bone from animal sources is in abundance, thus you won’t have to worry about not having enough bone for the bone graft, unlike using bone from yourself and others.

Bone graft using synthetic bone

Due to advancements in technology, you can also use man-made bone for bone grafts. These synthetic bones perform the same staging function as the other bone grafts mentioned above. However, as it is man-made, it does not have the same genetic stimulation as autografts and allografts, which are human bones, thus synthetic bones lack cells that restore and heal. Hence, the structure is weaker, which is similar to xenografts. The good thing is, you will not be at risk of contracting any diseases from synthetic bones.

Other alternatives

If you feel that none of the options above is not for you, don’t worry. There is a last alternative – sinus lift. What we do in a sinus lift, is, “lifting” your upper jaw to create enough room for the bone graft to be inserted in the areas that contain premolars and molars. The bone used in this procedure can be from your part of the body, donated from others, animals, and man-made sources.

How do I know if I don’t have enough bone for a dental implant?

Well, this is not something you can just see. You will need the professional advice and consultation from a dentist, which will conduct an X-ray for you to assess the situation of your bone. At Guerrino Dentistry, we have stellar dentists who are more than willing to help you and answer your queries about dental implants and bone grafts. Feel free to schedule an appointment with us today!