There are a myriad of reasons why a patient may elect to get a dental implant. However, while dental implants look, feel, and work better than dentures, not everyone has the right bone structure to have them placed. Not only can the lack of sufficient bone support make your dental implants fail, but it could also break the bone upon which they are attached. Here at Dr. Behnaz Yalda, DMD, we take this consideration quite seriously, which is why we are pleased to provide sinus lifts to those who may need it.
When Would You Need a Sinus Lift?
Sinus lift surgery is performed on patients with thin bones under the floors of their maxillary sinuses. This is a layer of bone and membrane, which covers the underside of the maxillary sinus. Below this layer is where your upper teeth lie, and dental implants are attached to the bone layer itself. Before we begin the procedure for a sinus lift, we will first order CT scans to check if the bone layer is too thin for placing dental implants. This is important, as sinus lift surgery is a fairly intensive surgical procedure; therefore, we only want to do this on people who have a legitimate need for it.
How Sinus Lift Is Performed
Before the surgery itself, we would first need to know what kind of bone graft material is ideal to expand the bone. The best kind to use in any surgery is always autogenous bone, which is bone that comes from your own body. However, we may need to use other substitutes, such as those from a human donor or laboratory-produced synthetic bone. Using substitutes depends on a number of factors, as well as what you are comfortable with.
Sinus lift surgery involves placing an incision into the gum tissue at the procedure site. This exposes the bone tissue behind it. We would then cut a small circle on the bone, which we would push upwards to open a small cavity between the maxillary sinus membrane and the bone tissue. This is where we inject the bone grafts until the tissue is thick enough to support a dental implant. Afterward, we would seal the gap by suturing the gums closed. All of these can take between 90 to 120 minutes, and you will be sedated during the entire process.
Recovering from sinus lift surgery can usually take between three days to three weeks. During this time, it would be best to avoid chewing, talking, and sneezing as much as possible. We usually prescribe nasal sprays and antihistamines to prevent sneezing in patients who are prone to nasal allergies. After about six months, the graft would be finished settling into your bones. It is around this time when we would start drilling into place your new dental implants.
Sinus lift surgery may seem complex, but by turning to our skilled team of dental professionals, you can be confident that you will receive the highest quality of care. To learn more about this procedure, or to set up an appointment at our office, please Dr. Behnaz Yalda, DMD a call at (240) 831-6001 today.