In cases where a patient needs to have a number of missing lower back teeth replaced, nerve repositioning or nerve lateralization is used, but the patient’s bone mass is not tall enough to successfully place dental implants.
Nerve repositioning or lateralization of the nerve involves repositioning the lower alveolar nerve, which is the nerve that supplies the chin and lower lip areas of a patient with feeling. It may not be possible to place dental implants in patients who have experienced significant bone loss in the lower jaw area without damaging the lower alveolar nerve – that is why this nerve needs to be moved or repositioned. This technique allows making available the whole height of the lower jaw for placing longer dental implants.
Nerve repositioning is a dental procedure that is used in cases where the patient has missing teeth in the back of the lower jaw area and requires the placement of a dental implant in this particular area. A nerve repositioning technique is required if the patient does not have enough bone height in the lower jaw area to support the placement of a dental implant, or if the bone mass quality in the affected area is not strong enough to hold the dental implants firmly in place.
This technique is an alternative to the need for a technique of onlay bone grafting. This is an advanced technique that carries a risk of nerve damage that can leave a patient on the surgical side with an altered feeling or lower lip numbness. This may be transient or permanent, and without being prepared for this outcome, patients should not undergo this technique.
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