Sometimes, patients in Charleston, SC, need a “lift” to get dental implants. Also known as a sinus augmentation, a sinus lift is a surgical procedure that helps ensure as many patients are candidates for dental implants as possible.
What Is Sinus Lift/Sinus Augmentation?
When you lost teeth in your upper jaw, the bone in your jaw naturally begins to shrink over time if the teeth aren’t replaced with dental implants. When this happens, your sinuses expand to take over that empty space. This is problematic because dental implants need enough bone in the jaw to set properly. Fortunately, a sinus lift can be used to place the needed bone in the area and provide a solid foundation for dental implants.
Why Sinus Lift for Dental Implants?
As mentioned above, sinus lifts are usually required when there isn’t enough bone in the upper jaw to support an implant. There are specific reasons why this happens and why a sinus lift may be essential for a successful dental implant procedure. Here are some of them:
- You may have lost the bone because of gum disease
- Your sinuses may be too close to the upper jaw
- Tooth loss may have cause bone to “resorb” back into the body
- Your upper skull/jawbone may not have enough bone to support implants to begin with
Whatever the reason for the absence of bone in the upper jaw, sinus lift surgery is a potential option for dental implants.
What a Sinus Augmentation Looks Like
While the sinus lift process can vary depending on your unique circumstances (e.g. Dr. Carimi sometimes is able to lift the sinus while simultaneously placing the implant) here’s a general idea of what you can expect for the procedure:
- You receive anesthesia (Dr. Carimi provides complimentary nitrous oxide to all patients, if necessary).
- A small opening is created to access the sinus cavity.
- Dr. Carimi lifts the sinus back into its original position.
- He then places a grafting material beneath the sinus to keep it in place and fuse to your bone.
- After a healing period (usually six months), your mouth will be ready for dental implants.
If you’re interested in a dental implant consultation and want to see if a sinus lift can make you a candidate, contact us today to schedule a consultation.