A ridge is an area in the mouth where teeth have been removed. Different ridges have different shapes and sizes. Some ridges are thin and flat, while others are thick and tall. When teeth are removed and a socket preservation graft is not performed, sometimes the area where the teeth were present will collapse and shrink as it heals resulting in a very small, narrow ridge. A ridge augmentation procedure can be completed to increase the thickness and height of bone in this area. With the proper thickness and height of bone, dental implants can be placed. Dental implants cannot be placed unless there is enough bone height and thickness. Bone grafts purchased from a tissue bank or synthetic bone can be used with a special membrane. The area heals for about 6-9 months. Implants are then placed.
Bruce B. Wiland, DDS, MSD is board certified in the specialty of periodontics which includes the placement of dental implants. Other services include laser periodontal therapy, esthetic tissue contouring and nonsurgical treatment.
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