Generally speaking, dental ridge augmentation is the process of surgically strengthening or correcting your upper or lower jawbone, which form the foundations of your upper and lower dental ridges. However, given the difference in your upper dental ridge and your lower jaw, or mandible, the procedures differ in certain aspects. In many cases, the point of ridge augmentation is to bolster jawbone structure in preparation for dental implant placement. With that consideration in mind, the point of each procedure is to ensure your jawbone can successfully withstand the placement of one or more dental implant posts.
Ridge augmentation for the mandible
Your mandible, or lower jaw, is the densest part of your jawbone, and fortifying it by augmenting it is relatively straight-forward. It involves grafting donor bone structure or a biocompatible grafting material to the part of your mandible that has lost mass and density. Your natural, healthy bone structure accepts the graft and makes it a part of its own structure, creating a stronger, denser foundation for your smile. Because your lower jaw is the densest part, candidates for lower ridge augmentation can often benefit from more minimally invasive implant treatment procedures that help minimize the need for grafting.
Sinus lift for the upper dental ridge
Your upper dental ridge isn’t as dense as your lower jaw, and directly above lies the floor of your sinuses. If you’ve lost enough mass and density in this area to require grafting, then a sinus lift may be performed. This involves carefully lifting the floor of your sinus to make room for the donor bone and/or grafting material, as well as for your dental implant posts. Because of the limited room that your sinuses allow for, minimally invasive implant treatment techniques can be of great benefit to patients who wish to rebuild their upper dental ridges with implants.
Bone grafting and minimally invasive treatment
While bone grafting can be necessary in some instances, we typically prefer to minimize every treatment plan we devise for our patients. In some instances, this may include helping patients avoid the need for ridge augmentation before the placement of dental implants. For example, depending on the level of jawbone erosion you exhibit, the use of specialized, mini dental implants may help you enjoy the benefits of implants without having to fortify the jawbone structure they’re placed in.
Learn more about ridge augmentation
In severe cases of jawbone erosion, upper or lower ridge augmentation may be necessary for restoring your smile. However, with minimally invasive treatment, we may be able to help you minimize or avoid the need for bone grafting. To learn more, schedule a free consultation by calling The Dental Implant Place in Ft. Worth, TX, today at 817-560-0414. We proudly serve the residents of Ft. Worth, Dallas, Southlake, and all surrounding communities.