Dental implants allow our patients to enjoy a full, healthy smile, even following significant tooth loss. For dental implants to be completely successful, the patient must have adequate jawbone, providing a place for the dental implants to be securely anchored. While some patients may not have sufficient jawbone for dental restoration. We can help them achieve a confident smile and complete dental health through a sinus lift.
Sinus Lift Explained
The sinus lift is sometimes called a sinus augmentation. The procedure is typically performed when patients seek dental implants but do not have adequate bone tissue for successful implant placement.
Specifically, the sinus lift increases the amount of bone in the upper jaw. This is done through bone grafting, wherein a small amount of bone tissue is harvested from elsewhere on the body, then patched onto the upper jaw. This small amount of bone tissue triggers the generation of new bone material where it is needed the most.
To make room for this new bone material, Dr. Brandner will typically need to “lift” the sinus membrane, which is how this procedure gets its name.
Reasons Why a Sinus Lift May Be Necessary
The sinus lift is usually recommended when your oral surgeon is unable to anchor dental implants in place. This can happen when the bone in your upper jaw is not high enough or simply when the sinuses are a little bit too proximate to the teeth and bone.
There are several reasons why some patients lack sufficient bone tissue for successful dental implants, requiring a sinus lift or some other form of bone graft. The most common reasons include periodontal disease and the loss of teeth in the upper jaw. When you lose teeth and do not replace them, it can ultimately lead to the atrophy of your jawbone.
Is a Sinus Lift Necessary for Dental Implants?
Not everyone needs a sinus lift in order to get dental implants. If you have sufficient bone in your upper jaw, or if you are only having implants on your lower jaw, then a sinus lift may not be necessary. Your oral surgeon will be able to advise you on whether a sinus lift is necessary for successful implant placement.
What Happens Before a Sinus Lift Surgery?
Before your sinus lift surgery, Dr. Brandner will take some X-rays to confirm your need for a sinus graft. He will also talk with you about where the transplant bone material will be harvested (either from somewhere in your mouth or elsewhere on your body).
Additionally, Dr. Brandner will take as much time as you need to walk you through the details of the procedure, explain any alternative treatments you might consider, and field any questions you have about getting dental implants.
What To Expect from The Sinus Lift Procedure?
It is understandable to feel a little apprehensive before surgery, but the sinus lift is very simple and straightforward. Here is roughly what you can expect.
The Initial Consultation
During your initial consultation, Dr. Brandner will take X-rays, physically examine your teeth and gums, and answer your questions about the surgery.
Preparing for the Procedure
Before we begin the surgery, we will ensure that you are properly sedated, typically with IV sedation. This prevents you from experiencing any pain or discomfort during your sinus lift.
During The Procedure
Once you are fully sedated, Dr. Brandner will make an incision in the gum tissue, exposing the bone underneath. He will then cut a small circle in the bone and lift the bone piece into the sinus cavity. He will fill the hole with a bone graft, then close the incision. For most patients, the entire surgery takes between 90 minutes and two hours.
What Is the Recovery Process for a Sinus Lift?
Healing from a sinus lift usually takes just a few days. During that recovery period, you can anticipate some minor swelling and tenderness, which you can alleviate with over-the-counter medications. Some patients will experience light bleeding from their mouth or nose, but this should subside after the first day.
Dr. Brandner will recommend that you wait at least a week before resuming strenuous activity, but most patients feel fine heading back to work within two to three days.
Explore Your Options for Dental Restoration in the Covington, LA area
A sinus lift may be your first step toward total dental restoration and realizing a smile that exudes confidence. Find out more by scheduling a consultation with Dr. Joshua Brandner at The OMS Center of South Louisiana.
Contact our office whenever you are ready at (985) 687-1616.