I have significant bone loss in the back of my mouth. How much bone is needed to have dental implants and is there an option for me with so much bone loss? Thanks for the help.
The good news is that mandibular bone loss, like any bone loss, can be regenerated through a bone graft.
There are several potential sources of bone for the bone graft. The bone can be obtained from the patient (from another part of of the patient's body). This is called "autogenous" bone. Alternatively, many times bone comes from an animal, i.e. bovine bone. This is called a xenograft. It is best to discuss the different bone graft options with your dentist.
In addition, to the actual bone graft, many dental practices will also cover the graft with a membrane (thin film of tissue), which could be a resorbable or non-resorbable collagen, to keep soft tissue from filling the space as it heals.
With regards to the exact amount of bone to regenerate, this is a question best dealt with on a patient specific basis. In general, it depends proportionally to the amount lost and the extent of the implants to be placed. To get the most accurate answer as to the extent of the bone loss and what can be done, a Cone Beam Ct scan should be ordered.