Bone grafting is done for two reasons: One is to create enough bone to place dental implants, the other is to fill out bone deterioration under the gums. Filling out the gums is done for cosmetic and gum contour reasons.
Bone grafting can be done in every area of the mouth. The predictability and quantity of the bone is highly dependent upon the area of the mouth and the size and type of graft needed.
When there is inadequate bone for placement of a dental implant then bone must be added to the area to support an implant. The bone used for this procedure is either your own bone (autogenous) , donor bone (allograft) or synthetic bone substitutes (alloplasts).
Access is made through the gum tissue and one or a combination of these products are added to your deficient bone area. The area is closed using an artificial collagen or donor membrane. Many times PRP is used under the membrane. PRP is a blood product we get from you via I.V.
Many times the dental implant can be placed at the same time the bone grafting is done. If the area to be grafted is large then the bone graft must be placed first an allowed to heal 6-9 months before the dental implant can be placed.
Autogenous material for bone grafting is the gold standard. What makes it difficult to use is that each bone harvesting site requires additional surgery and increased morbidity. The majority of bone grafting today involves a combination of both allografts and alloplasts. The advantage is that we have an unlimited quantity of bone that is available to use.
Although there has never been a documented case of any disease transmission from the millions of donor products be it bone or membrane, the patient must be aware that these are human products and have inherent risks.