Dental implants are the gold standard for permanent tooth replacement. Increasing numbers of people choose them over dentures to comfortably speak, chew and smile.
However, if you have suffered significant bone loss in the upper jaw, you may need a sinus lift before your dental implants are placed. The most common reasons for this include:
A sinus lift is a fairly common procedure that grafts bone to the upper jaw in the space between the molars and premolars. To make room for the extra bone tissue, the sinuses have to be moved upward ('lifted').
The sinuses are two hollow, air-filled cavities that sit on either side of the nose above a part of the jawbone called the maxilla. The maxilla lies closest to the teeth, and it is this part that gets lifted.
Your dentist will perform a comprehensive examination of your mouth and jaw to determine whether a sinus lift is needed. They will take dental x-rays and may need to perform CT scans to assess the current condition of your jaw.
Before performing a sinus lift, your dental surgeon will first determine where they will get the extra bone. It could come from a number of sources, such as:
A sinus lift is performed under local anesthetic, so you will not be put to sleep. However, if you feel anxious, you may be given a sedative to relax you.
The procedure typically takes around one to two hours to perform and includes the following steps:
You will not receive your dental implants on the same day as your sinus lift. You will need to wait for at least a few months. This gives the new bone time to fuse correctly with your existing bone.
The time you will have to wait between your sinus lift and receiving your dental implants depends on several factors, such as how much extra bone was needed.
Immediately after your sinus lift procedure, you may experience some discomfort and swelling around the eyes and cheeks. You may even bleed from your mouth and nose.
Don't worry. These things are common following a sinus lift. You will probably feel uncomfortable for a few days but shouldn't experience any major discomfort. If the pain continues and the bleeding lasts more than a few days, you should contact your dentist immediately.
While a sinus lift is considered safe, a few complications are possible, as they are with any surgery. They include tearing or puncturing the sinus membrane and infection.
You must take care of yourself and any part of your body that has undergone surgery. The following tips will help you recover from your sinus lift.
After your surgery, you should try to avoid the following activities:
If you need a sinus lift before going ahead with the dental implant procedure, there is nothing to fear. It is a straightforward procedure that prepares your mouth for dental implants if you have suffered significant jawbone loss. A sinus lift creates stronger bone for your replacement teeth.
If you have any questions about sinus lifts and dental implants or want to schedule an appointment, please get in touch today! Contact us at (314) 936 3621 or make a booking online. We can conduct a thorough examination to determine whether a sinus lift is required before your dental implant procedure.