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Guaranteed Dental Solutions

Ridge Split Osteotomy Can Expand a Narrow Jaw

When a jaw ridge is too narrow for dental implants, you and your Guaranteed Dental Solutions doctor may decide that a procedure may be necessitated at the time of implant placement to widen the ridge. One common procedure, performed in the upper and lower jaw, is called the ridge-split osteotomy.

Although this procedure may sound severe, it is really quite routine to our doctors at Guaranteed Dental Solutions. It is slightly more complex in the lower jaw than in the upper jaw, as the bone in the upper jaw is somewhat softer than that of the lower jaw. Nevertheless, it can be done in either.

Graphic depiction of the ridge split procedure for dental implants

Let us take a quick run-down in each procedure. First, we will look at the upper jaw, as it is softer bone and usually easier with which to work. The first step, after accessing the bone, is to make a “split” on the bone with a bone bur. This is to guide your Guaranteed Dental Solutions doctor with future steps in the procedure. Then, a series of special instruments will be used, called osteotomes, to slightly widen the upper jaw ridge. The ridge will naturally want to collapse. At this point, your Guaranteed Dental Solutions doctor, will prepare the implant sites in their proper places with their proper sizes. This will be allowed now due to the “give” already in place from the previously prepared expansion.

After the implants are in place, there will be significant “gaps” left in between them from the initial widening. This is then grafted. This grafting procedure will be explained at the end of this narrative.

The second type of ridge-split expansion is in the lower jaw. This is slightly more difficult but is not impossible. It is performed with the same initial steps as in the upper jaw. Your Guaranteed Dental Solutions doctor will still perform an initial ridge split. The doctor will then use a series of osteotomes. The difference is that before using a series of osteotomes, your doctor will have to make one or two vertical releasing splits in the bone. This is due to the much more dense nature of the lower jaw. After the osteotome procedure is completed, the implants will be placed just as described in the upper jaw procedure. This, as well, will require bone grafting.

Ridge-split expansion requires significant bone grafting around implants. At Guaranteed Dental Solutions we like to use the most state-of-the-art in dentistry. We use platelet rich plasma, or PRP, and platelet rich fibrin, or PRF, along with other bone grafting materials depending on the case. Not every case is the same, but we do guarantee that you will get the best and the latest and the greatest. You are one-of-a-kind and we want your treatment plan to mirror that.

If you have been told in the past that you cannot have dental implants because your ridge is too thin, we would like to see you for a second opinion. We believe that we have another answer. Call us today to schedule your complimentary evaluation. We look forward to being your dental implant home!

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