A sinus lift is a procedure in which the floor of the sinus is raised in order to accommodate a dental implant. The back of the upper ridge is usually the most difficult area for placement of dental implants. The bone quality in this area is not always conducive to implants, and the sinus is usually a factor.
The bone in this area of the mouth is often too thin for a dental implant. Tooth loss from years before can contribute to thinness and poor quality of the bone. In order to place a dental implant in this area, a bone graft is often required along with a sinus lift.
What is Sinus Lift Surgery?
There are several methods which can be used to raise the sinus. One of the more common techniques is to expose the bone through a small incision. The bone is then cut to form a small circle. This little piece of bone is lifted up into the sinus cavity. It acts as a tiny trap door. The space under the little circle is filled with bone graft material.
Once the grafting material has been placed, the incision is closed up with sutures. The area is then left to heal. It takes several months for the graft to heal and generate new bone. This process can take anywhere from four months to a year.
After sufficient bone has been generated, the implant can be placed. In some instances, the implant can be placed at the same time the sinus is lifted. You need to consult with your dentist about this possibility. It is not an option in every case.
Direct and Indirect Sinus Lift
There are two types of sinus lifts. Which one is used depends on the height of the bone at the implant site. If the bone is a minimum of 7-8 mm, the indirect sinus lift method can be used. If the bone height is less than that, the direct sinus lift method will need to be used in order to grow a bone graft and place an implant.
After a thorough examination, your dentist will advise you about which type of sinus lift will be best for your dental implant. Keep in mind that it is necessary to strictly follow postoperative instructions in order to ensure that the implant will be successful. Failure to follow the instructions, including oral hygiene instructions, could result in the implant failing.
Contact Ora Dental Implant Studio today to have your questions about sinus lifts and implants answered. If you have missing teeth, make an appointment for an exam and consultation so we can explain the dental implant process to you.