Bone grafting involves using healthy bone to replace damaged or diseased bone. The bone graft can be from the patient’s own healthy bone (autograft) or a donor (allograft). In some cases, animal tissue (xenograft) or synthetic bone (alloplast) may be used. The graft increases the density and volume of the area where bone loss has occurred.
A general dentist, dental specialist, or oral surgeon can perform bone grafting under anesthesia. Here is information on how long it takes for bone grafting to heal.
Reasons to Perform Bone Grafting
Bone grafting may be used to fuse joints to prevent movement. The procedure can help repair fractures or broken bones that result in bone loss. Grafting can repair injured bones that have not healed. It may help rebuild the jaw when bone loss has occurred due to periodontal disease.
Dental Bone Graft
Dental bone grafting helps address bone loss in the jaw. Dentists perform this procedure before dental implant surgery or when the bone loss affects the neighboring teeth. The surgeon will cut the affected bone and insert a graft into the area during the procedure.
The bone graft is held in place with plates, pins, or screws. The grafted bone allows the body to self-heal as the natural bone tissue grows and regenerates.
Different Types of Bone Grafts
There are four types of bone grafts. They include:
- Socket or ridge preservation graft that is used for a missing tooth.
- Ridge augmentation increases the volume and size of the jawbone.
- Periodontal bone graft is used when gum diseases have eroded the bone.
- A sinus lift helps create a foundation for dental implants to replace the upper back teeth.
Bone grafts need to heal completely before placing dental implants. The recovery time varies among individuals. Sometimes, a bone graft and dental implant can be placed together.
Before Dental Bone Grafting
Bone grafting increases the patient’s eligibility for dental implant surgery and other treatments by restoring the jaw to its original condition. Before the bone graft placement, the dentist will conduct an oral exam to check teeth, gum, and jaw health. Scans and dental X-rays help determine the extent of bone loss. The dentist will use the data to create a personalized treatment plan for the patient.
After Bone Grafting
Most people experience swelling, bruising, and pain after a dental bone graft. It is normal, and the effects should diminish within a few days. Pain relievers can help reduce the symptoms, and the dentist may prescribe antibiotics if needed.
It is not unusual for some small bone fragments to come out of the treatment site. It is usually not a cause for concern, but you can contact your dentist to ensure the healing is proceeding as expected.
How Long Bone Grafting Takes to Heal
Most people feel normal within a week or two after the surgery. Many can return to their duties the day after the procedure. Complete healing from a bone graft can take three to nine months, depending on different factors. The factors include the location of the graft, the type of graft used, and the patient’s body-healing capacity.
After placing the graft, the dentist will monitor the healing process. Contact the dentist immediately if you notice symptoms such as bleeding, increased swelling, fever, and pus.
For more on how long it takes for bone grafting to heal, contact Weston Center for Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. Our office is in Weston, Florida. Call (954) 507-6441 to book an appointment today.