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FAQ:  Implants


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Question:
Orthodontic Movement versus Insufficient Bone: I am missing an upper premolar which was extracted many years ago. According to my dentist there is not enough bone to place an implant.

He has given me various options to try and grow bone in the area, one of which I have never heard of and would like your opinion on this type of procedure. It involves orthodontics.

The second premolar would be moved to the position of the first premolar and the implant would be placed in the position of the second premolar. ...Visitor from NY

Answer:
This technique can work well if you are patient.

In order to move an adults tooth transversely through bone, a considerable amount of time must be taken. As the tooth moves through bone, the osteocytes "eat away the bone" in front of the movement. The osteoblasts "build bone" bone behind the tooth. If the movement is too rapid the osteocytes may also eat away the root of the healthy tooth. This is known as root resorption.

As long as the procedure is done properly, there are no periodontal concerns and the root has a normal morphology (shape) it is a wonderful procedure.

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