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"Is ridge augmentation possible at my age?"

ZocdocAnswersIs ridge augmentation possible at my age?

Question

77 years old. I am experiencing severe bone-loss to the lower jaw wherein denture is practically useless; Is there any hope for this condition?

Answer

One of the common findings that people who have worn dentures for a long time will experience is regression of the bone of the mandible. This usually will develop over time, and can eventually become painful due to the pressure that is applied to the nerves that innervate the lower parts of the jaw. After a time, dentures become difficult to use, and many people are very restricted in their diet, and also suffer the social, cosmetic, and psychological complications of not having teeth. There have been attempts to augment the lower jaw using various techniques, the majority of which attempt to increase the bone height and strength by encouraging the growth of new bone, often with implants or transplantation. Obviously, these surgeries can be very involved, and it is important to understand what the long term prognosis would be. Your age (77), would not necessarily be a contraindication to the surgery for many dentists or oral maxillo-facial surgeons, but it would be important to meet with one that you trust and come to understand what the surgery will entail. Obtaining a second opinion can also be valuable when you are considering elective surgery. Please speak to your dentist or surgeon.

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