It also establishes a jawbone shape that helps to facilitate the healing process that follows.


Why is an alveoloplasty performed?

When performed prior to denture construction, it’s used to optimize the shape of the patient’s jawbone (ridge) to avoid complications with appliance insertion, comfort, stability, and retention. When performed in association with tooth extractions, it also establishes a jawbone shape that helps to facilitate the healing process that follows.

1) When is an Alveoloplasty Required?

It is commonplace that at the time of initial denture construction, the dentist may identify jawbone irregularities that are likely to interfere with denture insertion, comfort, stability and, retention. If so, plans will need to be made to perform an alveoloplasty. Some of the types of problems that may exist include:

  • The surface of the patient’s jawbone is not smooth and even. Any portion of the ridge that is sharp or protrudes may become irritated by the denture surface that lies over it.
  • A denture (typically a hard object) must be able to slip over the jawbone for which it’s made. If the jaw ridge has “undercuts” (regions where the ridge is excessively concave, or areas that have a divergent form as compared to other aspects of the jawbone) they must be corrected so that it’s possible to insert and wear the appliance.

2) Why is an Alveoloplasty needed?

As a patient, you may wonder why the corrections you require weren’t made at the time of the original extractions.

  • In some instances, it may be that healing and subsequent jawbone remodelling (natural reshaping) have progressed differently than originally anticipated.
  • In cases where teeth have been removed sporadically over a number of years, an outcome where the resulting ridge shape is not ideal is quite common.
  • In other cases, the existing problem may be one that was always best approached using a separate alveoloplasty procedure. This can include situations where the patient has exostoses or tori (additional lumps of bone found on the jaw or hard palate), or some type of skeletal irregularity with their jawbones.

3) How is the alveoloplasty procedure performed?

It’s typically considered a “minor” surgical procedure (on the order of having teeth removed).The overall extent and complexity of the process will simply depend on where the needed corrections are made (such as one/both sides, upper and/or lower ridges, hard palate, etc) and the degree of difficulty associated with them.



The same local anaesthetic that is used for the extraction will be used to numb the bone and gums.

Recontouring the bone

Recontouring the bone

Bone trimming is typically accomplished via the use of bone files, rongeurs (dental “pliers” used to snip bone), and dental drills.

Post-op healing

Post-op healing

Non-resorbing stitches are typically removed after 7 to 10 days.

Exposing the bone.

Exposing the bone

Gum tissue flaps will be created and opened up, to expose the underlying bone that needs to be trimmed and adjusted.

Closing the surgical site

Closing the surgical site

Once the surgeon is satisfied that they have made the necessary corrections, the surgical site is flushed with water or saline solution and then the reflected flaps are positioned back and secured in place with stitches.

Denture making

Denture making

Denture making can resume another week later.

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