Tooth Bone Loss

Bone loss in teeth not only leaves unattractive spaces but it can also make it difficult to achieve an aesthetic restoration. Dentists can perform bone grafting procedures with materials that stimulate new bone growth at the missing tooth site. And, if placed immediately after a tooth extraction, grafting can prevent excessive bone loss and allow for future dental implants to be placed.

Some people who wish to replace their missing teeth with dental implants do not have sufficient bone in their jaw to anchor the implants firmly. If gum disease has damaged the bone surrounding your tooth root, your dentist might have to replace it with a graft.

The most common use of bone grafting is in application of dental implants, in order to restore edentulous area of a missing tooth. If your jawbone isn’t thick enough or is too soft, you may need bone grafting before you can have dental implant surgery.

It’s important to have sufficient bone in your mouth for both aesthetic and functional reasons. If an accident or gum disease results in the loss of teeth or extraction, the bone and gum tissue surrounding the missing teeth heals at a slightly lower height than the adjacent tissue – often resulting in a bone defect.

The teeth will appear much longer than the neighboring teeth, unless the defect can be masked in some way. It’s then extremely difficult, sometimes impossible, to replace the missing teeth with an aesthetically pleasing, well-fitting fixed bridge.

Treatment for teeth bone loss

A number of techniques are available to correct bone loss around teeth:

  • Regenerative bone &/or gum grafting – rebuilding or regenerating bone and gum tissue around and between the teeth.
  • Composite bonding – to reshape the teeth to hide ‘black triangles or holes’ between the teeth.
  • Fixed porcelain interdental addition – gum-coloured porcelain or composite resin added to crowns or bridgework to mask the gap between the gum and the restoration.
    Removable artificial tissue appliance – flexible plastic used to hide missing gum tissue.
    Ridge augmentation – surgical procedure that adds grafted or synthetic bone tissue and or gum to reinstate the ridge to its correct height and shape.


The cost of a bone graft depends on the type of bone used. If needed as part of a dental implant, the cost of a bone graft is generally included in the quoted price for the implant.

Tooth bone grafting

If you have extreme bone loss or have been told in the past that you have insufficient bone for dental implants, the good news is that you may now be eligible for bone grafting. If, after evaluating both your bone quality and quantity using an X-ray or CAT scan, the dental surgeon finds there isn’t enough bone for implant placement, he may recommend bone grafting.

This procedure usually involves removing a small amount of bone from another part of your body, such as your jaw or hip, which is then used to replace the missing bone in your tooth or teeth. Once everything has healed, you should have enough tooth bone to be able to support an implant.


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