Ridge preservation in dental care refers to the dental procedure performed after a tooth extraction to prevent the degeneration of the alveolar ridge that surrounds the empty socket in the jaw. This procedure ensures that the natural contour of the jaw remains unaltered by filling the empty pocket in the ridge with tissue and bone.
The goal of ridge preservation is to prevent the loss of alveolar bone, which can occur due to the absence of tooth roots and result in facial contours changing over time. By preserving the alveolar ridge, the height and width of the bone are maintained, providing a suitable foundation for future dental implant surgery and improving the aesthetics of the area.
During ridge preservation, a bone graft material is placed into the socket of the extracted tooth and covered with a protective membrane to promote healing. The bone graft material can be obtained from the patient’s own body or a synthetic source. The healing process typically takes a few months before the area is fully ready for a dental implant.
Ridge preservation is not always necessary but is highly recommended if the bone surrounding the empty socket is broken, and if the patient plans to have dental implant surgery in the future. By preserving the ridge, the success rate of dental implants is increased, as they require sufficient bone for their structure.
How long does ridge preservation last?
Ridge preservation is a method of decreasing bone resorption following tooth extraction and facilitating prosthetically-driven implant placement.
The duration of ridge preservation depends on various factors such as the technique used, the biomaterials used, and the location of the extraction site.
Studies suggests that ridge preservation should be considered if an implant is to be placed more than six to eight weeks after tooth extraction.
If implant surgery is delayed for over a few months post-extraction, it can be helpful to place bone filler into the socket(s) to avoid the shape of the ridge shrinking.
After a ridge preservation procedure, the extraction site may be slightly sorer than it would be from just after an extraction.
Further long-term studies are required to assess the duration of ridge preservation.
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What is the difference between a bone graft and a ridge preservation?
Both bone grafting and ridge preservation are dental procedures that are used to help rebuild or augment the jawbone. However, they are used for different purposes and involve different techniques.
Bone grafting is a procedure where bone or bone-like materials are added to areas of the jawbone that are deficient in bone tissue.
This is typically done to improve the bone density and provide support for future dental implants or dentures.
On the other hand, ridge preservation is a procedure done immediately after a tooth extraction.
During this procedure, bone grafting material is placed into the empty socket where the tooth was removed to preserve the height and width of the bone.
This is an important step in allowing a dental implant to be placed later without the need for additional bone grafting surgeries.
The main difference between the two procedures is that bone grafting is primarily done to rebuild bone in areas of the jaw where there is a deficiency, while ridge preservation is a preventative measure done immediately after a tooth extraction to preserve the existing bone height and width.
With both procedures, the goal is to enhance bone density, but the timing and purpose of the procedures differ.
It is essential to consult with a dental professional to determine which procedure is suitable for the specific patient’s needs and goals.
You can call us here at 719-569-5959 and Dental Specialists of Southern Colorado will be able to guide you on which procedure you might need.
What are the types of ridge preservation?
There are different types of ridge preservation techniques that can be used to minimize external resorption of the ridge and optimize bone formation within the socket as a consequence of bone remodeling.
The following are some of the most frequently used ridge preservation techniques:
• Socket preservation: This type of graft is placed in the socket immediately after a tooth extraction. It fills the void left behind by the missing tooth and prevents the sides of the socket from caving in.
• Ridge augmentation: This technique increases the width and volume of the jawbone so it can provide a stable foundation for implants or other restorative options. It is used when the supporting jawbone is thinner than it was before due to missing teeth.
• Soft tissue punch: This technique is mainly used in the anterior region when both hard and soft tissue need to be preserved. The socket is grafted with bone and covered with a resorbable membrane.
All successful ridge preservations have a common starting point, which is the atraumatic extraction.
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