The oral surgeons at Stevenson, Fairchild & Surber OMS in Valparaiso & Merrillville, IN want you to enjoy the benefits of dental implant tooth replacement. However, they insist on providing that service with the highest level of safety and lowest risk of complications. For some patients, that involves a nerve repositioning technique, performed as part of implant placement.
When is nerve repositioning needed?
Sensation in your lower lip and chin is produced by the inferior alveolar nerve. Natural position of this nerve may interfere with placement of dental implants in the lower arch. If this is your situation, the doctor will move the nerve to reduce risk of dental nerve damage.
Treatment generally follows these steps:
- Surgery is performed in the sterile surgical suite at Stevenson, Fairchild & Surber OMS offices.
- The treatment area is numbed, and IV sedation or general anesthesia is administered.
- An inferior alveolar nerve block is administered. Precise placement of this local anesthetic ensures a comfortable procedure.
- A small incision is made on the side of the lower jawbone, exposing the nerve and vessel canal.
- The nerve is isolated and moved aside.
- The neuro-vascular bundle is carefully monitored while dental implants are placed into the jawbone.
- When implant placement is completed, the nerve bundle is placed back in position.
- The surgical access site is filled with bone graft material and possibly PRP (platelet rich plasma). Grafting may also be performed as a second, separate procedure. Grafting material can be taken from another site in the patient’s mouth or other area of the body. While your own tissue integrates most readily, cadaver bone, biological material, or synthetic bone may also be grafting options.
You will need a ride home due to residual grogginess from anesthesia. Bed rest is recommended for the remainder of the day, and you should limit physical activity for a week, to allow tissues to heal. Some degree of postoperative numbness is normal, but it usually resolves in time.
Advanced technologies aid in nerve repositioning in Valparaiso & Merrillville, IN
Nerve repositioning may be necessary for implants at the site of back molars in the lower jaw, when less aggressive options cannot be considered. Inferior alveolar nerve repair requires precision execution. Dr. Howard Stevenson, Dr. Stephen Fairchild, and Dr. Timothy Surber utilize leading-edge diagnostic technologies, including 3D imaging with a CT scanner, to remove guesswork from surgical planning and treatment.
With our doctors’ expertise, your smile is in good hands. Call (219) 307-4382 for an appointment.