If you have been recommended a dental implant surgery, its success depends on the quality and quantity of the bone where the implant is going to be placed.
Typically, the upper jaw area is considered to be a tricky place for dental implant emplacement due to its narrow bone and its nearness to the sinus cavity. In addition, if you have experienced bone loss due to periodontal disease, you may not have enough jawbone density for an implant. This is when we recommend a sinus lift surgery.
What is a Sinus Lift?
A sinus lift surgery, also known as sinus lift augmentation, is a procedure that can help increase the jawbone density in the area between your upper molars and premolars, above which is the sinus cavity. The procedure is performed by raising the membranous sinus floor and developing a bone in that space for the successful emplacement of dental implants.
During a sinus lift surgery, Dr. Welton will make an incision in your upper gums to expose the jawbone. A small opening is made in the bone and this piece is lifted into the sinus cavity like a flap and space underneath is filled with the grafting material.
There are several options for grafting materials, which can help regrow your lost bone. These include taking a graft from your own body, getting it from a human donor or an animal, or making it synthetically in a lab.
Once the material fills the space, the incision is closed and the bone is allowed to heal and grow. Depending on the jaw health of the person, this process can take anywhere between four to 12 months.
Most people report they suffer from minimal pain during and after the procedure.
People who undergo sinus lift surgery have a greater chance of successful dental implants, which can last for decades.
What Happens After a Sinus Lift?
After your sinus lift surgery, you may experience some swelling in the area where the bone was augmented; however, most people say the discomfort is little. Some people may also report light bleeding from the mouth and nose in the few days following the sinus lift surgery, but these issues will resolve themselves quickly.
After the procedure, we advise you not to blow your nose and try not to sneeze. Either of these things can dislodge your bone grafting material and break your stitches.
We may also recommend a saline spray to ensure your nose remains moist, prescription medication to prevent inflammation and congestion of the nose, over the counter painkillers, antibiotics, and an antibacterial mouth rinse.
We may also schedule a follow-up appointment seven to 10 days after the procedure. During this session, we will check whether your surgical site is healing well and remove any stitches that have not been dissolved.
What are the Risks of a Sinus Lift Procedure?
A sinus lift is a surgical procedure, and like any surgery, it contains a small number of risks:
After a sinus lift procedure, if you experience increasing pain, swelling, and bleeding, after 1 to 3 days or if you develop a fever, you should call us as this can be a sign of complication.
A sinus lift may seem like a daunting procedure, but in reality, this surgery is simple and straightforward and the risks of complications are low. If you are concerned about your surgery, call us at (509) 209-8537 and discuss your worries with Dr. Welton who can provide you with additional information.