The road to strong and healthy dental implants isn’t always simple, but when necessary, a sinus lift procedure is definitely a step on the road to a full and healthy smile. This relatively common procedure makes it possible to enjoy the full benefits of dental implants, even after significant bone loss.
What is a Sinus Lift?
A sinus lift, also called sinus augmentation, is a procedure that makes it easier to place dental implants. Some patients need dental implants but have suffered bone loss, thus not having sufficient bone support necessary for implants. You can get the support you need by having a sinus augmentation.
This procedure increases the amount of bone in the upper jaw that is required for dental implants. This is one of the most common bone grafting procedures for dental implant patients.
Often times, sinus augmentations are one of the many procedures done during a full mouth reconstruction.
Who needs a Sinus Augmentation?
Over the last 25 years, dental implants have become more readily available, making them an increasingly common dental procedure. As more people get dental implants to replace missing teeth, sinus lifts also have become more common.
A sinus augmentation may be necessary if you are missing teeth and jawbone in the back of your jaw, near your sinuses. Jawbone and teeth in this area could be lost due to birth defects, periodontal disease, cancer, other medical conditions, or just the natural healing process. A sinus lift can also be used if your sinuses are too close to your upper jaw and you need more space to place the implant.
The sinus lift procedure is a safe and straightforward procedure. and is generally performed at the prosthodontist’s or oral surgeon’s office. The entire process takes between 90 minutes to two hours.
- First, the patient is sedated using local and/or general anesthesia. If necessary, a doctor may use nitrous oxide, but this is less common.
- Next, the surgeon will cut the gum tissue where your back teeth used to be to expose the jawbone.
- With the tissue raised, and the jawbone exposed, the surgeon will cut a small circle in the bone through which they can gently push on the membrane of the sinuses.
- As the bony piece is lifted into the sinus cavity space the hole is filled with bone graft.
- After this is done, the procedure is complete and the surgeon will close the incision with sutures.