Dental bone graft

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If you need a dental implant to replace a missing tooth a bone graft may be needed if there isn’t enough bone left for the surgeon to attach the implant to. A bone graft, or periodontal regenerative procedure, can help create a solid support structure for the implant by fusing a piece of grafted bone or bone material to the existing bone. Dental bone grafts are typically recommended for people who have severe periodontitis in the ridge of the jaw that supports natural teeth has started to weaken because of bone loss. ¹ ²

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How much does a dental bone graft cost?

Dental bone graft cost isn’t the same for everyone. The cost of the actual surgery to perform the bone graft varies based on factors like where you live, how extensive the surgery is going to be, and whether or not you have insurance. If you’re paying out-of-pocket, the surgery can typically cost several hundred to over a thousand dollars per graft.³ If you are having implants done or if you need grafts to support a dental bridge you may likely need several bone grafts done before your jawbone can handle the bridge or implants.

That’s just the cost of the actual surgery. You will typically also need to have X-rays taken, consultations before surgery with your dentist and the oral surgeon, and you may also need other dental care before you can have the graft surgery.⁴ Afterward you may likely need follow-up care and exams, all of which are typically billed separately from the surgery. Having dental insurance may help lower your out-of-pocket cost for both the surgery and pre-surgery and post-surgery care that you will need. Just make sure that when you’re shopping for dental insurance plans you choose a plan that covers major dental procedures because a bone graft is typically considered major dental work. You should also check on the waiting period that comes with the insurance because if you choose a plan with a long waiting period for major services you could be waiting a year or more to get the bone graft that you need.

Signs of dental bone graft failure

Sometimes dental bone grafts fail. There are many contributing factors to the failure of a graft surgery. It could be that you have an underlying oral infection that keeps the surgery from being successful. Common symptoms of bone graft failure that you should keep an eye out for in the first few days after you have oral surgery are:⁵

  • Severe drainage from the surgical area.

  • Swelling that doesn’t go down.

  • Redness that doesn’t dissipate.

  • Fever and a bad taste in your mouth, which could indicate an infection.

Dental bone graft healing pictures

Dental bone graft healing pictures and before and after pictures can give you an idea of what your gums and teeth should look like after a successful surgery. This can help you to know if your mouth is healing properly. It should be clean in bone graft healing pictures that the tissue that is healing looks healthy even if it’s a little red. Angry looking tissue, or bone that looks like it’s falling apart can be good examples of what you shouldn’t see in a healing mouth. But if you think that your mouth isn’t healing properly or if you are feeling pain you should always call your oral surgeon or your dentist to get a professional evaluation.

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Learning more about the importance dental health, how to keep your teeth and mouth healthy, and what’s involved in major procedures like dental bone grafts will help you live better and stay healthy.

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Brought to you by The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America (Guardian), New York, NY. Material discussed is meant for general illustration and/or informational purposes only and it is not to be construed as tax, legal, investment or medical advice and is not intended to influence any reader’s decision to select, enroll in or disenroll from a Medicare plan. This is not dental care advice and should not be substituted for regular consultation with your dentist. If you have any concerns about your dental health, please contact your dentist's office.


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  1., 2019

  2., accessed January 2021

  3., accessed January 2021

  4., 2019

  5., 2018