What Is Ridge Augmentation?
A ridge augmentation is a common surgical procedure often performed following a tooth extraction. This procedure helps recreate the natural contour of the supporting bone that may have been lost from the tooth extraction.
When a tooth is removed, an empty socket is left behind creating a void in the alveolar ridge. Usually, this empty socket will heal on its own, filling with bone and covered by soft tissue. However, the site will continue to deteriorate and the amount of bone loss can ultimately be significant.
Rebuilding the original height and width of the alveolar ridge is not always medically necessary, but may be required for dental implant placement or for aesthetic purposes. Ridge augmentation procedures provide a viable treatment alternative for these otherwise deficient sites.
How Is A Ridge Augmentation Accomplished?
A ridge augmentation is accomplished by placing particulate or block bone grafts at deficient sites. It is often done immediately after tooth extraction to avoid the need for additional procedures. Following tooth extraction, the particulate bone graft is placed, the site is then covered with a collagen membrane and the soft tissue is secured with sutures to hold the graft in place. Once the socket has healed, the alveolar ridge can be prepared for dental implant placement.
Ridge augmentation is typically performed under local anesthesia. However, the procedure may also be completed under IV sedation for patient comfort.
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