A sinus lift, also referred to as ‘’sinus elevation’’ or ‘’sinus augmentation’’ is a safe and effective treatment for those who may need to replace bone that has been lost or which is deficient around the posterior (further back) region of the upper jaw, traditionally a challenging area to place dental implants due to the insufficient bone quantity and the proximity to the sinus cavity.
The sinuses are two anatomical cavities full of air which we all have located above the posterior part of our upper jaw. Much like a balloon, these cavities are surrounded by a membrane and can change shape when teeth are lost.
If you have lost bone in the posterior region of the jaw due to periodontal disease, tooth loss, or you have worn dentures for some time, you may not have enough bone to facilitate dental implant surgery. A sinus lift procedure can help raise the sinus floor to develop bone for the successful placement of dental implants.
X-rays and a CT scan are used during the initial consultation stages to identify areas where bone is deficient, as well as mapping important underlying structures such as nerves and blood vessels which must be avoided during surgery.
There are several techniques which can be used to raise the sinus and allow for new bone to form. Very often a bone graft material will also be used to help keep the sinus membrane in a higher position.
Firstly, patients are sedated with either a local or general anaesthetic. Next, to place the bone, a small incision is made into the gums exposing the underlying jaw. A small opening is cut into the jaw to expose the membrane that lies in between your sinus cavities and your jawbone. This membrane is pushed upwards or “lifted” out of the way creating more space for your jawbone, the space created is then packed with bone grafting material before your gum is sutured back into place.
Depending on your specific needs, your implants might be placed at the same time, or perhaps some time will be allowed for the bone to develop before the implants are placed.
Patients will experience some side effects as they recover from a sinus lift procedure, but discomfort should be minimal. The most common side effects of treatment are swelling along the gum line, tenderness, and the possibility of slight bleeding from the gums and/or nose.
You will usually return 7-10 days following your surgery when your dentist can check on your healing and remove your stitches if they haven’t dissolved by themselves.
Most patients must wait about 4-9 months before they receive their implants as this gives the bone a chance to fuse in its new position. The exact waiting time will depend on the type of material used, however the option for simultaneous implant placement may be an option that you can discuss ahead of
The key to implant success is the quantity and quality of the bone where the implant is to be placed. Undergoing a sinus lift procedure improves the chances of a successful and long-lasting implant treatment outcome making this procedure one of the most reliable treatments we offer, with a 99% success rate.
If you would like to find out more about Dental Implant treatments or Sinus lift procedures, please contact us on 0207 563 9989