What Is A Sinus Lift, And How Is It Done?

Whether you were preparing for a dental implant or simply went in for a regular check-up, being told that you need a sinus lift can be a pretty big deal. Even more so if you have never heard of the term before.

Most people don’t know how a sinus lift is done or what it even means. However, if you have been told that you need a sinus lift, it is natural to have questions about the procedure. That is why, in this blog, we have broken down what a sinus lift is, when it’s necessary, and how the procedure is performed, so make sure to keep on reading to learn more.

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    What is a Sinus Lift?

    A sinus lift, also known as sinus augmentation, is a dental surgical procedure that best resembles a bone grafting treatment. It helps to add and promote bone growth in the upper jaw, near the molars and premolars. This space is typically accessed through the gums by drilling a small hole and lifting the sinus membrane. The purpose of a sinus lift is to boost bone growth and height so that there is stability in your jaw. This is especially necessary if the patient has to get dental implants or is at risk of losing bone mass.

    Questions About What Is A Sinus Lift, And How Is It Done? ?

    When Do You Need a Sinus Lift?

    Due to the intense and intrusive nature of a sinus lift, it is not a common procedure. However, there are certain instances that might result in you needing a sinus lift, such as:

    • Not Enough Bone Mass
      If you’re thinking about getting dental implants, but there is not enough bone mass or height in your jaw, then chances are your oral surgeon will recommend getting a sinus lift first.
    • Tooth Loss in the Upper Jaw
      When the teeth in the upper jaw fall, especially the molars or premolars, it can cause your sinus cavity to expand. This narrows the space for dental implants, making it hard to install an implant base.
    • Low Sinus Floor
      Although rare, some people are born with a naturally low sinus floor. This can sometimes interfere with the implant placement, which is why a sinus lift is needed.

    How is a Sinus Lift Done?

    The sinus lift procedure is typically performed by an oral surgeon due to its lengthy and intricate steps. However, before the procedure begins, the patient is administered local anesthesia to numb out the pain. This makes it easier for the oral surgeon to operate without triggering discomfort.

    To start the procedure, a small incision is made in the gum tissue, which exposes the underlying jaw bone, allowing the surgeon to gain access to it. However, since the jawbone covers the sinus, a very small hole is drilled in the bone so that the sinus membrane can come into view.

    Once the surgeon is able to see the membrane, they carefully lift it away from the bone, forming a small pocket in between. Then, with the sinus membrane lifted, a bone graft material is gently placed in the open space. Usually, the bone graft is either synthetic or taken from another part of the patient’s body, although, at times, a donor can also be used. Nevertheless, when the graft is in position, the surgeon very slowly closes the incision with stitches, effectively sealing everything up and marking the end of the procedure.

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    Bottom Line

    A sinus lift may seem like a complicated procedure, but when done right, it can shape your smile and boost healthy jawbone growth. Always make sure to consult with your dentist about the treatment. If you would like to know more about a sinus lift or other dental surgeries, feel free to contact Lifeline Dental at (281) 409-3777.

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