What is a sinus lift and how can it improve your candidacy for dental implants? Sufficient bone density is required to anchor the small titanium posts of dental implants. For a successful dental implant procedure a patient must have adequate bone density in their jaw. Don’t fear if you’ve been told you do not have adequate bone density. Having inadequate bone density does not necessarily disqualify a patient from getting dental implants, either traditional dental implants or Same Day Teeth®. In many cases, a sinus lift provides patients with a solution to the problem of inadequate bone density and allows them to qualify for dental implants. Some patients can begin dental implant treatment in as few as four months following a sinus lift.
How exactly does a sinus lift work?
A sinus lift provides a solution to insufficient bone density in a particular area of the jaw that is often a problem spot for many patients. Dentists have discovered that the upper back jaw presents is commonly found to have insufficient amounts of bone available. Because the sinuses sit directly on top of the upper teeth, the patient is sometimes left with just a thin wall of bone between the sinus and mouth when the teeth are lost or removed. A sinus lift solves this problem, allowing patients to qualify for implants. Some patients can begin dental implant treatment in as few as four months.
What happens if my doctor tells me I need a sinus lift to qualify for implants?
Before your surgery, you will attend a consultation with one of our surgeons. He or she will examine your mouth and jaw and then take x-rays and digital images to study your jaw and sinus. This will allow your surgeon to determine the health of your sinus cavity and measurements of your existing bone. Armed with this information, the surgeon will tell you if you will make a good candidate for sinus lift surgery. If you decide to proceed, we’ll set you up with an appointment for your surgery at either our Palm Harbor, Trinity, or Spring Hill location.
What is the sinus lift procedure like?
The sinus lift is an outpatient procedure. You will be made to feel comfortable and will receive appropriate sedation for your procedure. To begin the surgery, your doctor will make an incision in your gums at the back of your upper jaw, exposing the bone underneath. He or she will create a small, round opening in the bone, allowing him access to the sinus membrane. The doctor will gently lift the membrane, directing it away from the jaw. He or she will then pack the space with your bone graft. Depending on the thickness of the bone, the amount of graft material needed will vary, but the doctor will typically add several millimeters of bone to the floor of the sinus cavity. When this is complete, your doctor will apply stitches to close the incision.
In some cases, if the doctor feels you have enough bone to stabilize an implant right away, he or she will place the implants during the same visit. Typically, however, you will need to wait anywhere from four to 12 months for the bone graft to heal before an implant can be placed.
What is the recovery and aftercare considerations for a sinus lift procedure?
Most patients experience very little discomfort following the procedure. You will need to make sure not to sneeze or blow your nose too hard, because these actions can loosen your stitches or cause the bone graft to move out of place. You may experience some swelling in the area of the surgery and may even see blood come from your mouth or nose. The doctor will prescribe you antibiotics and an antimicrobial mouthwash to prevent infection and can also provide a prescription for pain. You will be instructed to follow all post-op instructions and resume brushing and flossing as directed. Also, you must be sure to attend follow-up visits as scheduled. If you notice any abnormalities not mentioned in the post-op instructions, or have questions about recovery, feel free to call us.
Call us today at 1-800-NEW-LOOK (Outside Florida: 727-877-0011) to learn more about dental implants, oral surgery, Same Day Teeth®, or our periodontal services or use the contact form below to reach out to us with any question you may have. We have locations in Palm Harbor, Trinity, and Spring Hill for your convenience.