When it comes to replacing natural teeth, few dental procedures are as effective as dental implants. Unlike other potential options, dental implants are designed to act as an artificial “root system” for your replacement teeth, which means that they look, feel, and function more naturally than things like dentures or bridgework. In order to have these implants successfully placed, however, you must have a sufficient amount of accessible healthy bone available to support them. Sometimes this isn’t the case, especially in your sinus region. If you find yourself needing dental implants, but do not have the kind of space and bone necessary around your sinuses, then you might have to undergo a procedure called a sinus lift.
What is a sinus lift?A sinus lift is a surgical procedure that is used to add healthy bone to your jaw, around where your premolars and molars are located. The procedure is done when you must receive a sinus augmentation in order to receive dental implant surgery as there is usually not enough room to add the needed bone due to the location of your sinuses. The bone must be lifted, then, and moved upward into a location that is more conducive to bone augmentation. Note that a sinus lift is usually conducted by a specialist who understands how to work in the area between the maxillary sinuses and your jaw, which reduces the risk of injury or complications.
Why do I need a sinus lift?Not everyone who needs to receive dental implants will also need to have a sinus lift. Whether or not you do will depend upon a variety of factors. The location of the implants, for example, will determine whether or not you need a sinus lift. If the implants do not need to be inserted in the upper jaw, then you might not have to worry about your sinuses at all. If you do end up needing a sinus lift, then there are different reasons that could be behind this need. If you are missing teeth in your upper jaw—especially molars or back teeth—then you might not have enough bone to properly support implants. Bone might have been lost as a result of periodontal disease. Finally, a sinus lift might be done even if there is enough bone to place dental implants. If your sinuses are simply too close to your upper jaw for the implants to be installed, then you will need a sinus lift to make room for them. Sinuses get larger as you get older, and the size in general can vary from person to person.
What happens next?Once the procedure has been completed, you must wait for the area to heal before you can continue with the implant process. You will generally visit your specialist around seven to ten days after the procedure. You might also be pleased to know that most patients do not experience much pain after the procedure, but rather only a little bit of discomfort.
To learn more about dental implant surgery, bone grafting, and sinus lifts, call us at South Ogden: (385) 626-0977 Kaysville: (385) 439-0101 today! We are standing by to help.