Plasma Rich in Growth Factors: Oral Health Uses

By using plasma rich in growth factors in dental treatments, oral health benefits. We tell you when and what this therapy is used for.
Plasma Rich in Growth Factors: Oral Health Uses
Vanesa Evangelina Buffa

Written and verified by the dentist Vanesa Evangelina Buffa.

Last update: 06 December, 2022

The use of plasma rich in growth factors (PRGF) is gaining prominence in the oral health field. Relying on the help of this fluid for dental treatments improves results and accelerates recovery.

However, many people are unaware of what this innovative therapy is all about, even though more and more dentists are suggesting it to their patients.

Here we’ll tell you in detail how and why plasma is used in oral health and what its advantages are. Read on and discover this new therapy.

What is plasma rich in growth factors and how does it work?

When our body suffers a wound or injury, the tissues start a repair process. In this process, a series of proteins known as “growth factors” are released. They stimulate the natural healing and regeneration of the damaged area.

Plasma is the main component of blood. And, although it’s liquid in nature, it contains solid components that can be separated and used with special techniques.

The use of plasma rich in growth factors is a technique that isolates the proteins responsible for tissue regeneration from the patient’s own plasma. To do this, a blood sample is taken and then processed, separating the components responsible for tissue recovery.

These proteins or growth factors are found inside platelets. By isolating them, you can prepare them to take advantage of their ability to rebuild damaged tissues.

Once isolated, the product obtained is applied to the wound area to accelerate and promote its recovery. This enhances the body’s self-healing properties.

Plasma rich in growth factors is considered state-of-the-art technology in the field of regenerative medicine. And it’s an autologous alternative, i.e. one taken from the patient’s own body. This reduces the risk of side effects, such as rejection or inflammation.

The use of plasma rich in growth factors hasn’t only gained popularity in the field of oral health. It’s also used in other areas of medicine, such as cardiac, vascular, plastic, and dermatological surgeries. It’s also used to aid recovery from sports injuries and in orthopedic surgeries.

Main uses of plasma in oral health

Oral health is one of the many areas where plasma rich in growth factors is beneficial. Complementing dental treatments with this technique allows you to improve and accelerate the recovery of the intervened tissues.

Some platelets.
Platelets are cell fragments that circulate in the blood and carry growth factors.

These are the dental procedures that benefit from the use of plasma rich in growth factors:

Dental implants

When placing a dental implant it’s necessary to perform a surgical intervention. The gum and the bone are drilled into, in order to insert the screw into the bone. The artificial teeth that will rehabilitate the mouth are then placed on this attachment.

If the healing process of this intervention fails, the treatment fails. The new tooth will fall out and the patient will suffer discomfort. Therefore, a correct recovery of the tissues is fundamental for the implant to fulfill its function.

The use of plasma rich in growth factors favors the healing and recovery of the operated area. It helps the wound to close properly and in less time.

This not only improves osseointegration and the quality of the bone mass, but also promotes the sustainability of the implant. It also reduces inflammation and postoperative discomfort, as well as reducing the risk of complications.

Shortening tissue recovery times is especially important in dental implant treatments. This allows the definitive prosthesis to be placed on the screws much sooner, 2 or 3 months after the surgery.

This treatment allows the patient to recover their smile in a fast, stable way. In times when the appearance of the smile is so important, not having to wait as long to recuperate the teeth is a great advantage.

In implant procedures, plasma rich in growth factors can be used in two ways:

  1. Applying it directly on bone and mucosal tissues during surgery.
  2. Performing a treatment on the surface of the implants with plasma.

Alveolar bone loss

Tooth loss and a lack of proper rehabilitation lead to the thickness and height of the bone that contained the teeth being lost. A lack of stimulation in the area causes bone resorption.

As a result, the height of the jaws decreases. This affects the physiognomy of the face and the health of the remaining teeth and the temporomandibular joint (TMJ).

In addition, bone loss hinders rehabilitation treatments, both for the insertion of implants and for the placement of prostheses. Without bone, there’s no support for dentures.

Using plasma with growth factors helps to recover lost bone thickness. And, with this, treatments to rehabilitate the smile will be viable.

Periodontics

People who suffer from pyorrhea or periodontal disease suffer from the destruction of the tissues that support the teeth. The damage occurs as a consequence of an inflammatory and infectious process that develops deep in the gum.

The loss of gum, cementum, periodontal ligament, and alveolar bone leads to a lack of fixation of the teeth. Without sufficient support, it’s common for teeth to move and even come out.

The use of plasma rich in growth factors in periodontal treatments helps damaged tissues to recover. The application of this product promotes bone regeneration and gum healing.

Extractions and oral surgeries

Tooth extraction is always the last resort. Attempts are first made to preserve natural teeth, but sometimes this isn’t possible.

In cases where tooth extraction is indicated and unavoidable, the use of plasma rich in growth factors can provide benefits. Placing the product in the operated area favors and accelerates the recovery of tissues, and reduces discomfort, inflammation, and pain.

It’s especially useful in cases of extractions in patients with bone loss, periodontal defects, or who carry dental implants. It also helps greatly after the removal of cysts and infectious processes, and to treat oral and sinus communications.

Endodontics

Regenerative endodontics is a field of dentistry that’s beginning to develop. The use of plasma rich in growth factors in this area of oral health still requires further study.

However, the results of the research so far are promising. The use of plasma would be useful in cases of external resorptions, dental reimplantation, direct pulp protection, and revascularizations that favor apical closure.

Advantages of the use of plasma rich in growth factors in oral health

We have already mentioned that the use of plasma rich in growth factors provides multiple benefits in oral health treatments. The most important ones are listed below:

  • Improves the regeneration and healing of mucosa and soft tissues
  • Reduces post-surgical bleeding
  • Reduces inflammation and pain after surgery
  • Accelerates the postoperative recovery process
  • Promotes bone regeneration
  • It’s biocompatible: It’s a product originating from the patient’s own body.
  • The risks of side effects are minimal.
  • It reduces the risk of infections and post-surgical complications.
  • It’s obtained easily, without discomfort, and using very little blood.
  • As it’s autologous, that is, originating from the patient himself, it isn’t necessary to go to donors or blood banks. And there are no compatibility or rejection problems.
  • It recovers bone mass in the jaws, which makes it possible to place implants where it wasn’t possible to do so before.
Plasma rich in growth factors.
Plasma rich in growth factors has a lot of applications in the field of aesthetic medicine.

How is the intervention performed?

Obtaining plasma rich in growth factors to perform an oral health intervention is quite simple. The following steps can be highlighted in the process:

  1. Extraction of blood from the patient. This is performed in the same way as in a sample for a blood test. A small amount is sufficient.
  2. Isolation of platelets. This is achieved by centrifuging the blood sample at high speeds.
  3. Separation of the plasma rich in growth factors. With an anticoagulant, for direct use.
  4. Creation of an autologous fibrin membrane. This is another way to manipulate the product. Calcium chloride is added to obtain a fibrin clot rich in growth factors.

This technique must be performed by qualified personnel. Compliance with strict biosafety standards and having the relevant approvals from the health authorities are essential to perform this procedure.

Once the plasma or the fibrin mesh has been obtained, it’s placed in the oral area to be treated. That is to say, in the vicinity of the implants or where the dental extraction has been performed. Its presence will promote healing and tissue repair.

Plasma rich in growth factors is an extra help in oral health

Any patient with adequate oral and general health can have access to the use of plasma rich in growth factors. And it can be applied at any time of life; in children, adolescents and adults.

This technique is especially beneficial in smokers or diabetic patients, in whom healing is impaired. The tendency of these people to suffer infections or not to repair wounds can be corrected by applying plasma.

And, as we have told you, obtaining it is simple, fast and convenient. With a small sample of blood, it’s possible to help the tissues of the mouth to regenerate and repair themselves. Also, as it’s a product obtained from the patient’s own body, it doesn’t carry any risk.

In conclusion, using plasma rich in growth factors brings benefits to oral health. With this extra help, your mouth can look beautiful and healthy sooner!

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The contents of this publication are for informational purposes only. At no time can they serve to facilitate or replace the diagnoses, treatments, or recommendations of a professional. Consult with your trusted specialist if you have any doubts and seek their approval before beginning any procedure.