BONE GRAFTING FOR IMPLANTS
DO I HAVE ENOUGH BONE FOR A BONE GRAFT?
After tooth extraction, if the walls of the socket are very thick, they will usually fill naturally with bone in two to three months. However, when the walls of your socket are very thin (such as in your upper and lower front teeth), this type of healing will not be as predictable. In these situations, a bone graft is often placed at the time of tooth extraction to help your body fill in the empty socket with bone. This step will maintain the width and volume of bone you will need for implant placement several months later.
There may be inadequate bone for implant placement if your tooth was removed many years ago and your bony ridge is extremely thin. In this case, a bone graft can be placed next to the thin bone and allowed to heal for up to six months. After the graft has fused to your pre-existing bone, the ridge will be re-entered and the implant placed. Bone grafting is usually a relatively comfortable office procedure. Many different bone-grafting materials are available, including your own bone.
You may also need bone grafting if the sinus cavities in your upper jaw are very large, or very low, and extend into the tooth-bearing areas. This often occurs when teeth in the back of a person’s upper jaw have been removed many years before, and the amount of bone available for implant placement is limited. A “sinus grafting procedure” is then required. Most often, it is performed in the office with local anesthesia and perhaps sedation. During this procedure, the membrane that lines the sinus will be located and elevated. The bone will then be added to restore the bone height and ensure that dental implants of an adequate length can be placed. This procedure often can be performed at the time of implant placement.
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ABOUT DR. JOHN FERRIN, DMD, MS
WHO WE ARE
Dr. Ferrin brings a wealth of cutting-edge periodontal training with him to Southern Oregon. Born in the mountains of Northern Utah and raised in Mississippi. Dr. Ferrin joined the U.S Army National Guard at the age of 17 and served for 14 years. He received his Bachelor's Degree in Biology with an emphasis in Physiology from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and went on to earn his DMD at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas School of Dental Medicine. While attending dental school, he started a nationally recognized dental clinic to provide free dental care to Veterans in need. The clinic was named Sgt. Clint Ferrin Dental Clinic after his brother, who neglected his oral health due to several deployments. Sgt. Ferrin was later killed in action in Iraq in 2004. For his work in the clinic, Dr. Ferrin was awarded the ADA Foundation Award for student leadership.
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John D. Ferrin, DMD, MS
2930 E Barnett Rd, Medford,
OR 97504, USA