Tag Archives: Bone Grafting

Bone Grafting and Dental Implants

Getting dental implants may also require getting a bone graft for some people. Bone graft surgery sounds like a scary thing, but it isn’t as bad as it sounds. At Oral & Facial Surgery of Utah, our professionals can work with you to make the process as smooth as possible.

Bone Grafting

Bone grafting is not always required for dental implants. But if your jawbone isn’t thick enough or if it’s too soft, a bone graft may be needed for successful dental implants. Bone grafts create a solid base for a dental implant. There are different options for bone grafts—could a natural bone graft where bone is taken from another location in your body. Or there is a synthetic bone graft, where a bone substitute is used. Depending on your situation, you will likely only need minor bone grafting. Your oral surgeon can discuss whether you need bone grafting and what it will look like.

Dental Implants

Dental implants are a great way to replace a missing tooth in a very natural way. Usually, dental implant surgery is performed in stages. Firstly, the damaged tooth or teeth will need to be removed. Whether teeth have been lost or damaged due to decay, injury, or trauma—some bone loss has likely occurred. This can be dangerous, the bone around the jaw can start to deteriorate which will lead to whole other set of problems.

What the Procedure Looks Like

So, what does bone grafting look like? Bone grafting involves removing a piece of bone from another part of the body, or using synthetic bone, and transplanting it into the jawbone. Using a synthetic bone will save the patient from needing a second surgical site. It can take a few months for the transplant to grow and become strong enough to support the dental implant. The jawbone will need time to heal. Once healing is complete, an extension of the implant’s mental post—an abutment—can be placed into the jaw. The jaw will need time to heal again. Next, molds of the teeth and jawbone will be taken, and the final tooth (or teeth) will be inserted. To break it down in simple steps, it looks like this:

  • Discuss what an oral surgeon.
  • Damaged tooth is removed.
  • The jawbone is prepared for surgery.
  • A bone graft takes place.
  • The jawbone heals. There is a solid base for implants.
  • The dental implant is implanted.


After surgery, you should plan for some down time to heal. You will experience swelling in your gums and face, bruising of your skin and gums around the surgical site, pain at the implant site, and some minor bleeding. You’ll likely need some pain medications or possibly antibiotics to help with the healing process. You will need to eat soft foods while your mouth heals. There will also be stitches in your mouth—they may be the self-dissolving kind or the kind you need to have removed. If your symptoms are worsening instead of getting better, contact your oral surgeon. Your mouth may be vulnerable to infection.

What Is a Dental Bone Graft?

Your oral surgeon may recommend a dental bone graft if X-rays reveal bone loss in the jaw, also known as jawbone atrophy.

Grafting is a simple in-office procedure that takes little time and comes with several benefits. The surgery works to stimulate jawbone growth, which helps you keep a strong, healthy smile and maintain your youthful look.

So, what’s in a dental bone graft? Where does the transplanted tissue come from?

Four types of grafting materials are available. You and your oral surgeon will decide which is right for you.

Facts about dental bone grafting


With an autograft or autogenous bone graft, the bone tissue will come from your body. A small section of bone, taken from your hip, rib or leg, offers highly effective jawbone regeneration. However, using an autograft means adding an extra step to your procedure.


An allograft is a human tissue, but it comes from a tissue bank. The bone grafting material is extensively tested to ensure safety for transplant use, but tissue banks can’t guarantee that an allograft is without risk. For that reason, your oral surgeon may advise against this option.


Like autografts and allografts, xenografts are living tissue. However, the source of this type of bone graft is either a cow or a pig. Bovine and porcine tissue are biocompatible for use within the jawbone, and a xenograft offers a high rate of jawbone regeneration.


An alloplast isn’t living tissue — it’s synthetic, man-made grafting material. The material, comprised of surgical-grade resins, calcium sulfate, calcium phosphate and a host of other minerals known to encourage jawbone regeneration, has a long history of safe use. That said, this is the least common choice of most oral surgeons.

Selecting a Type of Dental Bone Graft

If your oral surgeon says grafting is essential to prepare for dental implant surgery or to preserve your oral health, what type of bone grafting material will the procedure require?

Autografts are ideal in terms of bone regeneration, but you might not like the idea of harvesting your bone tissue. On the other hand, you may be opposed to xenografts and alloplasts due to your personal beliefs. Your oral surgeon will consult with you about which grafting material will work best for you.

With the Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery of Utah team, getting a bone graft is a routine, simple procedure with a smooth and easy recovery. Our highly trained oral surgeons have over a decade of experience successfully treating northern Utah patients who experience jawbone atrophy.

Contact Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery of Utah in Cottonwood Heights, South Jordan or Tooele today to schedule a dental bone graft consultation.

Facts about dental bone grafting