Ridge modification is a bone grafting technique in which the bone graft material is added to a small ridge or a bony defect found in either the upper or lower jaw of the mouth. Periodontal disease, trauma, wearing dentures, or developmental problems can cause wear and tear of the jaw, leading to deficient bone which is mostly inadequate for supporting a dental implant. This procedure is carried out to restore and regenerate the lost bone and tissue so that it accommodates the dental implant.
Different techniques are used for recovering bone in an insufficient ridge. These techniques are selected based on various factors, for example, the area of the mouth and the volume of the bone that needs recovery.
Some of the more common techniques are:
- Onlay graft or Block graft: A small block of bone is fixed into the deficient ridge to regenerate the bone. This block of bone can be obtained from tissue banks or from another part of the patient's jaw.
- Guided bone regeneration: Bone and a special membrane are used for regrowing the damaged jaw. It takes around 4-6 months for healing before a dental implant can be placed.
- Infuse Bone Graft or BMP: Bone Morphogenetic Protein or BMP has been developed in the laboratory for bone regeneration. This technique is very effective but expensive at the same time due to the cost of BMP.
- Ridge splitting: If a dental implant is to be placed on a narrow ridge then the ridge can be split and expanded during the procedure.