Unfortunately, many people who lose teeth often lose jawbone tissue as well. As a result, many of the patients who could most benefit from dental implants cannot qualify for the surgery. This is especially true for patients who lose teeth from their upper jaw.
Thankfully, this is not the end of the line. As a special type of bone graft, sinus lift can add bone mass to your upper jaw if you lack the tissue necessary to support implants. Our doctors at Fort Bend Dental can perform a precise surgery that minimizes discomfort at their Missouri City, TX, and Richmond, TX, offices.
Why a Sinus Lift?
If a tooth root is missing for an extended period of time, the adjacent jawbone will begin to breakdown due to lack of stimulation. Because bone mass is naturally thinner in the upper jaw than the lower jaw, patients who have lost teeth in their upper jaw often lack the bone to support dental implants.
A sinus lift is a specialized surgery intended to remedy this problem. As the name suggests, the procedure requires the surgeon to lift the sinus membrane located just above the jawbone. This creates a space where the doctor can insert grafted bone material, just below the sinuses. In the months following the procedure, the grafted material fuses with your existing jawbone to create stronger bone and encourage new growth.
The Sinus Lift Procedure
Before scheduling the surgery, you will need to meet with one of our dentists to review your candidacy and provide images of your jaw. This allows the dentist to see your oral structure in detail and identify the most advantageous area to place the grafted bone.
On the day of your procedure, you will be made comfortable with a local anesthesia. Sedation options are also available for patients with dental phobia. Once you are comfortable, your dentist will make an incision in your gums and create a small opening in the bone. The sinus floor is then raised with a round, metal instrument and the grafted bone material inserted.
While some patients may opt to have their implant placed at the same time as the graft, most will need to wait four to six months to make sure the procedure takes effect.
Recovery & Aftercare
As with most minor surgeries, patients typically report swelling and tenderness after a sinus lift. Your doctor may prescribe medication to control pain, inflammation, and congestion so that you are more comfortable during recovery. They may also prescribe antibiotics to prevent infection. Patients can apply ice packs to the treatment area as a simple at-home remedy to reduce swelling, as well.
Patients will need to restrict their diet to soft foods and avoid using straws or smoking while they heal.
Patients will need to restrict their diet to soft foods and avoid using straws or smoking while they heal. To avoid irritating the surgical area, you will also need to brush and floss gently.
Most patients are able return to work in a couple of days. To ensure you are healing properly, we usually schedule a follow-up examination about a week after the procedure.
Enhance Your Candidacy
Find out how a sinus lift can strengthen your jaw and improve your candidacy for dental implants. Schedule your appointment online or call our Missouri City office at (281) 499-3541 or our Richmond office at (281) 342-6178.