Here at Paul L. Caputo, DDS, we are always excited when patients decide to fix their smiles with natural-looking dental implants. That being said, many of these patients have suffered for many years and are usually in a hurry to get their procedure done quickly. However, we encourage our patients to use caution because not everyone is immediately prepared for dental implants. If this is the case, supplemental procedures can be used to help get patients ready for their dental implant placement.
Here is some additional information about how supplemental procedures can help ensure a successful dental implant result.
When patients lose teeth, and those teeth remain gone for long periods, chewing function is impacted. First patients lose the ability to chew and this results in jaw muscle atrophy. But this is not the worst part of the damage. Ultimately, if left untreated, gum tissues recede and bone begins to deteriorate in the jaw area.
In the past, patients with gum tissue recession or jawbone deterioration would have been doomed to wear dentures for the rest of their life. But today there are many options to fix these problems. Two of the most commonly used supplemental procedures are bone grafting and gum tissue grafting. Both procedures add necessary volume to the tissues in places where healthy and dense tissue is necessary. Both procedures also assist our patients in preparing for successful dental implant placement.
To combat the serious problem of bone deterioration and a flattened jawbone, doctors created a procedure to help rebuild healthy jawbone volume. The bone grafting procedure was initially designed to help patients wear dentures comfortably and chew functionally. Early attempts at grafting used the patient’s rib bones, with extensive skin grafts to prevent displacement of the denture when the patient moved their jaw. The first grafting procedures were often ineffective, painful, and ultimately unsuccessful.
After much research and development, doctors found that tissue grafts from donated bone sources could easily be attached to areas of the jaw lacking necessary volume. These later efforts were much more successful and less painful. This means that patients can now get bone or tissue grafting right in the doctor’s office in just a few short visits. And after the bone graft area heals, they can be evaluated for dental implant candidacy once more.
Often times patients opt for tooth replacement options like bridges because they are the cheapest and easiest options. Later, after seeing other alternatives patients usually want a more permanent, functional, and attractive solution to replace missing teeth. However, many patients who have been missing teeth for long periods usually need tissue grafting to assist with a lack of sufficient gum tissue. So what can these patients do?
Sometimes patients can experience gum recession after losing their teeth. This in turn leaves sensitive areas of the tooth root exposed, which can increase the risk of infection, pain, disease, and tooth decay. Tissue grafting has been proven extremely successful in helping make gums resistant to recession and is probably the best solution for many of our patients.
During a tissue grafting procedure, healthy gum tissue is harvested from the patient’s own mouth (usually the upper palate). The specially harvested tissue graft is then attached to the area in need of extra gum tissue and the patient is sent home to heal. The graft helps preserve soft tissue in the dental implant area and make the gum tissues less likely to recede after dental implant surgery. This procedure can be performed at the same time as the dental implant is being installed or before your implants are placed.
Here at Paul L. Caputo, DDS, we understand that despite a desire to fix smiles right away, some patients are not immediately ready for the dental implant procedure. Today, thanks to bone and tissue grafting, patients who were previously unable to get dental implants, can now gain all of the benefits of permanent and natural-looking replacement teeth. If you live in the Palm Harbor, FL area, call us now for a no-obligation consultation.
Dr. Paul L. Caputo
3490 East Lake Rd. Suite A
Palm Harbor, FL 34685
Monday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Tuesday: 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM
Wednesday: 8:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Thursday: 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
Friday: 8:00 AM – 1:00 PM