A sinus lift is a form of oral surgery that you may need if you are planning to get dental implants in your upper jaw. If you suffer from bone loss in your jaw, a bone graft becomes necessary. In this case, your sinus needs to be lifted to provide space for the grafting. You will usually have to wait around six months for the bone graft to settle before getting your implants.
What Is a Sinus Lift Oral Surgery and What Are the FAQs?
This oral surgery will graft extra bone to a patient’s upper jaw. This happens near the molar and premolar teeth. The surgeon will lift up the maxillary sinus membrane to create space for the extra bone.
What Is the Maxillary Sinus Membrane?
Several parts make up the sinus system and the maxillary sinuses are the closest to a patient’s teeth. Sometimes, patients complain of toothaches when congested or when they have a cold. This is due to the pressure the sinuses transfer to the roots of teeth located in the upper jaw.
Why Is This Procedure Necessary?
A sinus lift is typically used when a patient does not have sufficient bone in the upper jaw to allow for a dental implant. Dental implants bond with the jawbone in a natural process, but this process requires a specific amount of bone. Patients may have lost bone for several reasons. These can include a damaged jawbone from trauma, bone loss that occurred from periodontitis or bone recession from tooth loss.
What Prep Work Is Necessary?
The dental surgeon will consult with the patient first to discuss any needs or concerns. The surgeon takes X-rays to better understand the jaw’s current condition and make sure the patient is a candidate for the oral surgery. Grafted bone can be taken from another part of a patient’s body, from another person, from cow bone or can be created from synthetic material.
What Does Oral Surgery Entail?
There are different ways to handle sinus graft surgery. All of them start with the surgeon making an incision in the gum to expose the bone. Usually, the surgeon cuts a small section into the bone and pushes it upward to find the sinus cavity. Then the surgeon will lift the cavity membrane and fill the space with granules of the bone grafting material. The last step is to stitch the gum back together.
What Is the Recovery Like?
After the oral surgery, the patient may have swelling in the area as well as bleeding from the nose or mouth. The patient will likely feel uncomfortable in the following days, though most do not suffer extreme discomfort. The patient should avoid sneezing and heavily blowing their nose for a few days. These actions can dislodge stitches or move the bone grafting material. After 7-10 days, the patient will return to the dentist for a checkup and removal of stitches.
Sinus Lift Procedures Can Make Dental Implants Possible
If you are missing one or more teeth and want a dental implant, your dentist may recommend the sinus lift. Understanding this oral surgery is an important first step. If you are considering dental implants but need a sinus lift first, ask for a consult to get started.
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