North Penn Periodontal Associates

Howard Gross, D.D.S., M.Sc. D.

2100 North Broad St., Suite 204 Lansdale, PA 19446

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  • Phone: (215) 368-5110
  • Fax: (215) 368-2017
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Dental Implant Procedures

Over time, with missing teeth, the jaw bone may be lost by resorption.  This often leaves a condition in which there is not enough suitable bone for placement of dental implants.  In these situations,  patients may be poor candidates for placement of dental implants unless appropriate therapy is performed to correct this problem.

Fortunately, we have the ability to grow new bone in the jaw where needed.  These procedures create the foundation to place implants of proper length and width in the proper location. This then allows us to restore dental function as well as excellent aesthetics. 

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Bone Grafting for Implants

Bone grafting can repair jawbone sites with inadequate bone structure due to previous extractions, gum disease or injuries. This enables the rebuilding of missing bone volume so that areas with deficient amounts of bone can be rebuilt and implants then placed. Bone grafting is often done at the same time we extract a tooth to prevent the loss of bone and eliminate the need to rebuild the jawbone.

Sinus lift procedure

The maxillary sinuses are behind your cheeks and on top of the upper teeth.  Sinuses are like empty rooms that have nothing in them. Some of the roots of the natural upper teeth extend up into the maxillary sinuses. When these upper teeth are removed, there is often just a thin wall of bone separating the maxillary sinus and the mouth. Dental implants need bone to hold them in place. When there is not enough bone above the sinus, it may be impossible to place dental implants of  proper length and width in this area.

There is a solution and it’s called a sinus graft or sinus lift graft. The periodontist elevates the sinus floor from the area where the roots of the teeth were.  A bone graft is then placed into the now elevated sinus floor.  After several months of healing, the bone becomes part of the patient’s jaw and dental implants can be inserted and stabilized in this new jaw bone.

The sinus graft makes it possible for many patients to have dental implants in areas where years ago there was no other option other than wearing removable dentures with no tooth support.

If enough bone exists between the upper jaw ridge and the bottom of the sinus to properly stabilize the implant, sinus augmentations and implant placement can sometimes be performed as a single procedure.  If not, the sinus augmentation will have to be performed first, then the graft will have to mature for several months.  Once the graft has matured, the implants can be placed.

Ridge Expansion

Some jawbones become very thin after tooth loss if no bone grafting is done at the time of the extraction. The jawbone is too thin and narrow to accept an implant. We now have techniques to widen the jawbone with grafting. There are many instances where we can widen the jawbone and place the implant at the same time, providing the implant can be stabilized. When the implant can not be stabilized, we must allow the widening bone graft to mature for several months first.

Ridge Preservation

Careful management of a tooth extraction and the remaining bone after the extraction, including bone grafting,  prevents unsightly bone loss and may eliminate the need for further grafting prior to implant placement. This also provides a better functional and cosmetic outcome for tooth replacement.