When placing dental implants in the upper back molar region, it is very common to have to augment the amount of bone available to support dental implants. If not enough bone exists for dental implants, we can rebuild the bone to allow dental implant placements. FOR THE FOLLOWING PICTURES, THE "BEFORE" PHOTO IS ON THE LEFT, AND THE "AFTER" PHOTO IS ON THE RIGHT SIDE.
Implant and Sinus Lift
Bone Regeneration around teeth
Bone loss present around teeth can be predictably regenerated using state of the art regenerative science and materials. A bone graft is placed to produce "guided tissue regeneration", which regenerates lost tissues and restores periodontal health. These X-rays show bone regeneration around the lower molar, 6 months after the initial photo. During that interim period, the general dentist also placed fillings to repair some cavities, that can be seen on the X-rays. The healthy result has been maintained for many years.
Esthetic "Crown Lengthening"
Esthetic crown lengthening surgery is a procedure where we remove some gum tissue in order to expose more tooth structure for esthetic purposes. Afterwards, new crowns or veneers can be placed, or else, the teeth are left natural without crowns, if the teeth are nicely shaped and the tooth structure is healthy. The procedure is called "crown lengthening" since the "crown" is the part of the tooth above the gum line, and removing some of the gum tissue exposes more of the "crown" or part of the tooth above the gum line. Hence, the term "crown lengthening".
When the ridge of bone is narrow, we can rebuild the ridge to allow dental implant placement. This improves the stability of dental implants and improves the success rates. The bone ridge is often narrow because a "bone graft" was not placed at the time of a tooth extraction. Also, a difficult extraction causes some of the bone to fracture away, and causes the bone ridge to shrink in size. If bone augmentation is not done at the time of extraction, it can also be done later.
In the following example, there is a large concavity under the "bridge", as a result of gum and bone destruction. The gum and the bone were both surgically rebuilt, to allow an esthetic bridge replacement.
In the following example, you can see, after the overlying gum was opened, bone loss extending all the way to the end of the root. The tooth was removed, and the gum and bone was rebuilt. Then a dental implant was placed in good, healthy, regenerated bone. The final photo shows a beautiful and natural esthetic result.
Gum Grafts ("Connective Tissue Grafts")
A gum graft is a procedure to cover up exposed root surface, for esthetics or to create periodontal health. The "BEFORE" image is on the left, and the "AFTER" image is on the right. Pay attention to the change in the level of the gum, after treatment.
Esthetic Implant Dentistry
This patient had a hopeless front tooth due to resorption that was destoying the support of the tooth. It could not be fixed. An implant was the best replcement. The tooth was extracted, bone grafted, and had the gum regrown with a gum graft. The final result matches great with the adjacent teeth and is healthy and stable too.
Here are the X-rays of the above case, showing the implant replacement. The implant is the replacement that is the closest thing to a natural tooth. It replaces the root that was lost and is self supported by the dental implant in the bone.
This patient had a single upper front dental implant placed to restore her smile and to restore missing teeth.