What Is a Sinus Lift?

The demand for dental implants is also increasing the number of sinus lift surgeries. If you are considering this procedure and have doubts, it would help to learn more about it. That includes knowing what a sinus lift is, determining the ideal time for the surgery, and acquiring a comprehensive overview of the process.



Sinus Augmentation



A sinus lift or augmentation is a surgical procedure closely associated with dental implants. In particular, it aims to boost the success of dental implants. Some patients seeking dental implants face the challenge of insufficient bone support due to bone loss. The procedure offers a solution by adding bone to the upper jaw's molar and premolar region. That helps increase the amount of bone in the area.


Sinus lift took its name from the surgery that raises the sinus membrane upwards to create space for the added bone. A dental specialist—such as an oral maxillofacial surgeon or periodontist—performs the procedure. 



When Is a Sinus Lift Necessary?



Are you considering the placement of dental implants? If so, the proximity of the sinuses to the jaw or inadequate bone height in the upper jaw may necessitate a sinus lift. The need for this procedure may arise from bone loss caused by several factors. 


These include periodontal gum disease, loss of teeth in the upper jaw, or reabsorption of bone into the body following tooth loss. Your dentist may recommend a sinus lift to improve the prospects of successful implant placement.



What to Expect Before Surgery



Before a sinus lift procedure, your dental professional will determine the source of the additional bone needed. The three most commonly used bone types in sinus lift surgeries include the following:


  • Autogenous bone from your own body.
  • Allogenic bone from a cadaver.
  • Xenograft from an animal.


If the bone comes from your body, your doctor will harvest it from other parts of your mouth or body. X-rays will give the surgeon or dental specialist a detailed view of your jaw and sinuses. That will enable them to make precise calculations and preparations for the procedure.



During the Procedure



Before sinus lift surgery, it is best to understand what to expect during the procedure. A general sequence of events during the procedure involves the following:


  • Making an incision in the gum tissue.
  • Lifting the tissue to reveal the underlying bone.
  • Cutting a circular portion in the bone.
  • Inserting the lifted bony section into the sinus cavity and filling the area with a bone graft.
  • Closing the incision.



After Surgery



The healing process commences. Following the surgery, a waiting period of four to 12 months is necessary to allow the new bone to integrate with the existing one before the dental implant placement. The duration of the waiting period depends on the amount of bone needed. Your dental professional will inform you when it is appropriate to proceed with implant placement.






You should discuss with your dentist the details of the surgery. That includes potential risks and when it is best to seek medical attention. The goal is to equip yourself with all the required information to make an informed decision. That will help you feel confident about the sinus lift journey.


For more on sinus lifts, visit Perio Atlanta at our Atlanta, Georgia, office. Call (404) 352-3123 to schedule an appointment today.

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