Why are supplemental procedures necessary?
Sometimes a patient’s jawbone can become thin or soft over time, often the result of a gap in the teeth that has not been filled. When a tooth has been missing for a while, the jawbone will deteriorate because it no longer receives stimulation from the tooth roots in a process called resorption.
Loss of bone can also be due to gum disease. Also known as periodontitis, gum disease can cause the gums to pull away from the teeth due to plaque buildup. Periodontitis attacks the supporting tissue and bone that keeps teeth in place, eventually leading to loss of teeth.
If this is the case, an implant cannot be immediately installed as there is not enough bone mass to support it and the implant could fail. Bone grafting and sinus lifts, both performed by Dr. Cederbaum, can remedy the issue and make your mouth ready to support dental implants.
During the bone grafting procedure, a small piece of bone will be surgically grafted onto your jaw bone. After the procedure, we allow a few months to pass so enough strong material can grow. Once enough hard tissue has grown, Dr. Cederbaum can install the implant and fill the gaps in your teeth.
Following the procedure, you will be given antibiotics and pain medication to aid in recovery. You may experience some swelling, which can be reduced by elevating your head and using ice on the area. You may also experience bleeding, for which you will have gauze to apply to the area for 20-30 minutes at the time it occurs.
If you’re missing teeth on the upper jaw, you may benefit from a sinus lift. Like bone grafting, this procedure is meant to provide more bone to anchor the implant.
The sinus cavity will be filled with bone graft particles to encourage bone growth. After your surgery, you may feel uncomfortable for a few days but most patients experience no major discomfort. You will be given medication to prevent sinus infections, and advised not to sneeze or blow your nose too heavily so the bone particles will remain in place.
After a few months, Dr. Cederbaum will install the dental implants in your newly strengthened upper jaw and you will be on your way to a fuller smile.
FAQs About Supplemental Procedures
Can I still get dental implants without a supplemental procedure?
If you have insufficient bone density, Dr. Cederbaum will recommend a supplemental procedure prior to the surgery to ensure it’s success. Patients who need to increase the amount of bone in their jaw will be required to undergo a supplemental procedure, such as a sinus lift or bone grafting, in order to have a successful dental implant treatment.
Without it, you face a significantly higher risk of implant failure, infection, and possibly even tooth or bone loss.
Will insurance cover my supplemental procedure?
Many insurance companies will pay for a portion of your treatment costs for supplemental procedures. We recommend contacting your insurance provider for more information on your specific coverage. If you have any questions or concerns, contact us at our Seattle office at (206) 524-1314 and we’ll happy to assist you.
Is bone graft surgery painful?
No, prior to beginning the surgery, Dr. Cederbaum will apply a local anesthetic to the area so you’ll be pain-free the entire time. We also offer sedation options so you’ll feel relaxed throughout the procedure. Following the surgery, any discomfort can be managed with over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen and a cold compress.
Contact Us for Stronger Implants
Implants are a beautiful, comfortable solution to missing teeth and we want yours to function exactly like natural teeth. These supplemental procedures are an important step in ensuring your dental implants are the strongest they can be.
Dr. Cederbaum has 30 years of experience in providing quality dental care. She is committed to fully caring for your health and is licensed to administer IV sedation, which one of three types of sedation we offer to help you relax during your procedure.
If a strong, healthy smile is on your mind, ask us how we can help you achieve it.