Socket Preservation Procedure

Preserving Your Jaw Bone after Extraction

Removal of teeth is sometimes necessary because of pain, infection, bone loss, or due to a fracture in the tooth.  Occasionally, the extraction site can heal with a bony deformity of the jaw after the tooth is extracted.

These jaw defects can present major difficulties when attempting to place dental implants.     The goal of “ridge preservation” or “socket preservation” is to place a graft material into the extraction site at the time of the tooth extraction to attempt to minimize a resultant bony defect.   It is important to realize that this procedure is an attempt to preserve the bony architecture and does not significantly augment the existing bone contours.  

The ridge preservation technique is essentially a method to “maintain space” thereby blocking the ingrowth of soft tissue to allow more time for bone healing and consolidation.   This procedure is likely most effective when bone is lost during an extraction or a bony defect is present.   This technique does not guarantee sufficient bone will be present for future implant placement or rule out that additional grafting procedures could be necessary.    It does, however, allow us to optimize the healing of an extraction site to allow for the best opportunity for a successful outcome.