A ridge augmentation is a common dental procedure often performed following a tooth extraction. This procedure helps recreate the natural contour of the gums and jaw that may have been lost due to bone loss from a tooth extraction, or for another reason. The alveolar ridge of the jaw is the bone that surrounds the roots of teeth. When a tooth is removed an empty socket is left in the alveolar ridge bone. Usually this empty socket will heal on its own, filling with bone and tissue.
The following are the most common causes for jaw bone deterioration and loss that may require a bone grafting procedure: When an adult tooth is removed and not replaced, then jaw bone deterioration may occur. Natural teeth are embedded in the jaw bone and stimulate the jaw bone through activities such as chewing and biting. When teeth are missing, the alveolar bone, or the portion of the jaw bone that anchors the teeth in the mouth, no longer receives the necessary stimulation and begins to break down, or resorb.
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