Ridge Expansion in San Diego, CA

Ridge Expansion at the Center for Oral and Facial Surgery

The dental experts at the Center for Oral and Facial Surgery are adept at performing ridge expansion procedures for patients in San Diego and El Cajon, CA. Ridge expansion is often a necessary technique for individuals with missing teeth because tooth loss can have adverse effects far beyond difficulties eating and speaking. When teeth are not replaced, the jawbone begins to recede, which negatively impacts other areas of one’s oral health. Significant bone loss can render the jaw unable to support permanent tooth replacement options. However, a professional ridge expansion will restore your mouth to a healthy state and provide the support required for dental implants or other tooth replacement options. Contact our friendly staff today to learn more.

The Importance of a Healthy Dental Ridge

A dental ridge, also known as an alveolar ridge, is a bony extension of the upper or lower jaw that secures the sockets of one’s teeth. The bottom arch extends upward toward the nose, while the top arch extends downward toward the chin. Not only are these anatomical structures essential for healthy teeth, but they are also critical to the success of dental implants. If a tooth is extracted from the maxillary alveolar ridge or lower alveolar ridge, as much as 30-60% of the bone can be resorbed. The bone can also lose density as a result of disease or age. Unfortunately, insufficiently-dense bone impairs the ability of our surgeons to implant dental hardware to restore a patient’s smile. Not having enough dense bone makes it especially challenging to embed maxillary alveolar ridge implants because of the proximity to the alveolar recess of the maxillary sinus. But our team at the Center for Oral and Facial Surgery in San Diego, CA specializes in ridge expansion techniques that can help make possible successful dental implants.

Understanding the Usefulness of Ridge Expansion

Patients in San Diego and El Cajon, CA with significant bone loss in their jaws and hopes of receiving dental implants may be prime candidates for a ridge expansion procedure. Our dental professionals will assess each patient’s jaw to determine whether it can support dental implants structurally. If too much bone is lost, a ridge augmentation will be necessary before performing a dental implant procedure. A shrunken alveolar ridge cannot support implants, but we can rejuvenate it by adding height and width through ridge expansion.

How We Perform Ridge Expansion in San Diego, CA

Our surgeons at the Center for Oral and Facial Surgery perform ridge expansion procedures with patients under general anesthesia to ensure comfort. We will gain access to the jaw bone by making small incisions in the gums. Following that step, we cut along the ridgeline in the bone and make additional perpendicular cuts to allow for expansion. As a result of these cuts, it is possible to use specialized tools to wedge apart the inner and outer segments of the jaw bone to create a space that we can fill with bone graft material or artificial implants. In some instances, the bone grafts must be allowed to heal before dental implants are possible. However, if the situation allows, our team can simultaneously place dental implants in the ridgelines along with the bone grafts.

Exercising Proper Care Following Ridge Expansion

After a ridge expansion procedure at the Center for Oral and Facial Surgery, patients must take careful care of their mouth and jaw to avoid causing any issues during the healing process. Our surgeons recommend avoiding chewing in the area or areas where we placed bone grafting material. Unnecessary pressure during the four to six months following ridge expansion can disrupt the healing process and compromise the outcome of the procedure. Patients must also practice proper oral hygiene. In addition to regular brushing and flossing, we suggest taking measures to reduce the risk of infections. To keep one’s mouth clean after surgery and expedite healing, patients can rinse their mouths with warm salt water multiple times throughout the day and after eating. Furthermore, alcoholic beverages should be avoided for at least the first week following ridge expansion, and smoking is prohibited for the first two weeks following the procedure.

Schedule Your Ridge Expansion Today

If you are experiencing bone loss in your mouth as a result of lost teeth, age, disease, or any other reason, rely on the experts at the Center for Oral and Facial Surgery to remedy the issue. We perform ridge expansion procedures at our locations in San Diego and El Cajon, CA to help improve oral health and provide patients with a foundation for dental implants. Contact us today to learn more about the procedure and whether it is right for you.