Serious deterioration to the jaw bone’s mass can cause problems with successful placement of dental implants; this is because the implants will need to have sufficient bone mass in the jaw area where they (the implants) can be firmly anchored to. Bone grafting is a surgical procedure in dentistry that has the goal of augmenting or adding to a patient’s insufficient jaw bone mass, so that dental implants placement can be made successfully and without complications.

Bone Grafting Techniques

There are several ways in which dental surgeons go about with the bone grafting procedure.

  • Onlay Bone Grafting – this technique is generally used for cases when a patient’s jaw bone has deteriorated due to tooth loss that has not been addressed for a long time. With an onlay graft, the dental surgeon applies the bone grafting material on top or to the side of the patient’s existing bone; the dental implants can be placed after a specified healing period is finished, to allow the grafted material so successfully integrate with the surrounding bone tissue.
  • Block bone Grafting – this technique is used when entire blocks of bone are needed to augment the existing bone mass. The block of bone that will be used will be carefully measured and adjusted to fit the specific area that needs to be augmented, and will be held in place with a few bone screws; these screws can be removed after the block of bone has successfully integrated with the surrounding bone tissue, after which the dental implants can be placed.
  • Particulate Bone grafting – this technique makes use of cancellous (spongy) and cortical (compact) bone materials. Particulate grafting is considered to have the shortest treatment times (as compared to the block bone and onlay bone grafting techniques), largely because the soft and hard tissues of the graft material swiftly regenerates and integrates with the existing, surrounding bone tissue.

Bone Grafting Material

The material used for bone grafting can come from the following sources:

  1. From the patient’s own body (usually sourced from the hip or pelvic area);
  2. From another human donor (from another person’s body, or through an accredited tissue bank;
  3. From an animal donor (from an animal, or through an accredited tissue bank);
  4. Artificial bone grafting material that has been created inside a laboratory.

Bone grafting makes it possible for patients with insufficient jaw bone mass to still have the chance to enjoy the benefits of dental implants. People can then look forward to having their missing teeth solutions with their implants – all thanks to the help that the bone grafting procedure can bring.