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Bone Grafts and Augmentation

Bone grafting is a safe and highly successful procedure that involves the “building up” or adding bone to the jaw by using your own natural bone from another location and/or by using donor, processed or synthetic bone materials. Often the new bone can be obtained from inside the mouth.  Dr. Patel can help you understand the advantages of different bone grafting methods and materials so that, together, you can make an informed decision.


Dr. Patel performs the bone grafts in the office using local anesthesia to numb the areas that  will be involved, sometimes along with intravenous sedation to remove anxiety. Dr. Patel is  board-certified in intravenous sedation.

After the procedure, you will usually be given antibiotics, pain medication if needed, and an  antibacterial mouthwash, and instructed to avoid eating certain foods and putting pressure on  the bone graft. You will return home in between dentist appointments while the bone graft  heals and should be able to work and go about your everyday life.

Your implants will be placed after the grafted bone has fused or become a strong, integrated  part of the existing bone. The amount of time the integration takes varies depending on the  location of the graft and the density of the bone. It may take three or more months.

Sinus Lift (Sinus Augmentation or Sinus Elevation).

Missing upper back teeth are among the most difficult to restore.  When the back teeth in the upper jaw are missing the sinus cavity becomes larger as the natural bone deteriorates over time. A sinus lift, also called sinus augmentation or sinus elevation, is a bone-augmentation procedure for patients who have insufficient natural bone in this area for dental implant placement. The procedure involves adding bone below the sinus so that one or more implants can be placed. The procedure does not affect speech, intonation or cause sinus problems.

After the bone has been given time to develop, usually for approximately four to 12 months, dental implants can be placed. Sinus augmentation, which many patients say causes only minimal discomfort, is designed to help ensure that your implants are long-lasting, with ample, strong and sturdy bone that will allow your new teeth to fit and function like healthy, natural teeth.

Ridge Expansion (Ridge Modification).

If the jaw isn’t wide enough to support dental implants, bone graft material can be added to a small ridge, or space, that is created along the top of the jaw. In some situations implants can be placed right after a ridge expansion. Other situations require approximately four to 12 months to ensure that the ridge has fully healed first.  Like all bone grafting techniques, ridge expansion helps ensure a strong foundation and long lifespan for your new teeth. It also can be used to correct an unattractive and difficult-to-clean indentation that can occur in the jawline near missing teeth.

Dr. Patel and Dr. Cox will help you determine if these procedures are needed as a part of your treatment plan and will discuss all options with you before proceeding. Please contact us with any questions you may have.

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