Alveoloplasty

 

What is Alveoloplasty?

We're all familiar with dentures. However many people are unaware of the process which precedes their application. Before dentures can be properly fitted and worn, the original teeth must be removed, and the jaw bone undergoes a minor surgical procedure, called Alveoloplasty, to smooth the jawbone. Alveoloplasty helps dentures sit more comfortably on the gums.

 

Why is Alveoloplasty Necessary?

If you've ever had a tooth pulled, you can probably feel some uneven spots surrounding the tooth's empty socket, although the edges are somewhat smoothed since they are covered by gum tissue. If you're a candidate for dentures, your dentist will have to extract all of your teeth. While the ridges left along the sockets are fine for the occasional tooth extraction, they can cause major problems down the road if dentures are made and fitted over them.

 

If you've worn dentures for a long time, you may have noticed that your jawbone has changed over time, forming a ridge that keeps your dentures from achieving a good fit. This is another situation where Alveoloplasty is used.

 

Steps to Successful Alveoloplasty.

Alveoloplasty is usually done in the dentist's office. In most cases, only a local anesthetic is required, however your dentist may use sedation dentistry via an intravenous injection. If you are scared of dental work, make sure your dentist knows so that s/he can prepare the necessary accommodations to make your visit as comfortable as possible.

 

  • Once your teeth have been extracted, your dentist will make a cast of your gums and jaw so that s/he can see where bone ridges need to be smoothed, flattened, and/or tapered for a good denture fit. S/he will make necessary adjustments to the cast. Then a plastic mold - called a stent - will be made as a guide for your dentist to use during the Alveoloplasty.
  • After the anesthetic has kicked in, the dentist will cut away necessary portions of the gums to expose the jaw bone. Using various tools, your dentist will reshape and contour the jawbone until it's smooth. S/he will apply the stent as a guide to check the fit. Once the stent fits well, the bone reshaping is complete.
  • Your Amarillo dentist will fold the gums back and stitch them in place. You might be given temporary dentures until the gums have completely recovered.

 

Alveoloplasty is a straight forward procedure with an average recovery time of one week. Contact Panhandle Dental for more information regarding your dental health.