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Dr. David A. Mugford
1660 Village Green
Crofton, MD 21114

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Why You May Need a Ridge Augmentation

Posted on 4/15/2017 by David Mugford
A diagram of how a dental implant works.
When you lose a tooth, the jawbone, and the socket, that supported that tooth begins to deteriorate. When this happens, your jaw changes shape. A dental implant is a great, permanent, option to replace a missing tooth, but sometimes, before the implant can be placed, you may need a ridge augmentation.

What is a Ridge Augmentation?

Sometimes, when a tooth has been removed, the empty socket heals up on its own. There are some instances, however, that lead to the bone surrounding the socket is damaged and unable to heal.

This leads to continuing deterioration and your jawbone changes shape. A ridge augmentation is a procedure that is meant to give back the natural contour of your jawbone. It rebuilds the deteriorated or damaged alveolar bone.

Preparation for Dental Implants

A dental implant is a small, titanium rod that is surgically placed into the jawbone to act as a "root" for a false tooth (or multiple teeth). In order for the implant to be placed and fuse successfully, your jaw needs to have sufficient bone mass.

A ridge augmentation is used to restore the ridge to its former shape using a synthetic bone material. This procedure provides a greater chance that the implants will be successful.

Before the procedure begins, you will receive a local anesthetic. Your dentist then makes cuts on your gum tissue to expose the weakened socket. Next, a synthetic material meant to substitute for bone is placed. Finally, the gum tissue is stitched back over the socket and you are given time to heal before your implant procedure.

The ridge augmentation gives your jawbone back the strength it needs to properly support the rod that will hold your false tooth. From the time of your ridge augmentation to the time you receive the final touches on your dental implant, the whole procedure may take up to approximately one year.

A missing tooth needs to be replaced. If the bone surrounding the socket has been damaged, your jawbone may not be able to properly hold the implant in place. Contact our office to find out if a ridge augmentation is right for you.

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Monday: 8:00am – 5:00pm
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Dental Blog | The Mugford Center | Crofton, MD
At The Mugford Center we emphasize education on dental health. Dr. Mugford has created this dental blog to help inform the community. Learn more here!
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