If a patient wants to get dental implants, they need to have enough bone density in the jaw to support the implants. Sometimes, when teeth are missing from the upper jaw, bone can start to deteriorate there, leaving just a thin layer of tissue separating the mouth from the sinus cavity. This does not leave enough bone to support an implant, which is why Dr. Scherer often provides sinus lifts for his patients.
Sinus lifts help add more bone to these deteriorated areas to strengthen the wall between the mouth and the sinus cavity so there is enough space to support an implant.
What Is a Sinus Lift?
A sinus lift is a type of bone graft that can help strengthen the jaw beneath the sinus cavity. The sinus cavity sits behind the cheeks and above the upper row of teeth. In patients with healthy teeth, the ends of the tooth roots extend up into this cavity. When a tooth is lost, bone can start deteriorating in this area, leaving only a thin strip of tissue separating the mouth and the cavity.
With a sinus lift, Dr. Scherer can help patients rebuild bone here. He’ll take bone from another part of the body, bone from a donor, or a synthetic compound and place it above and below the thin layer of tissue in the jaw. Over time, this bone bonds with existing bone and stimulates the production of new bone, effectively raising the sinuses so that the patient has enough bone density for a successful dental implant.
Reasons for a Sinus Lift
A sinus lift can be a great tool for many kinds of patients. It’s typically used in patients who want dental implants and may be suffering from the following issues:
• The sinus cavity is too close to the upper jaw and might interfere with the implants
• Tooth loss has resulted in bone loss as well
• Loss of bone because of gum disease
• Loss of the back upper molars, which is an area that naturally has less bone to begin with
• Congenital birth defects or other conditions which lead to a loss of bone structure
To assess candidacy for a sinus lift, Dr. Scherer will perform a thorough consultation at his office before conducting any procedures. He does this to ensure the patient will receive great results and not suffer any complications before or after treatment. This may involve a thorough oral exam, X-rays, and other imaging tests to get a good idea of the bone density in the jaw, determine how close the sinus cavities are to the jaw, and assess the patient’s overall oral health.
Recovery From a Sinus Lift
The sinus lift procedure itself isn’t something for patients to worry about, as it will all take place in Dr. Scherer’s office while under anesthesia or sedation. Patients won’t feel anything during the surgery and will wake up to find a few incisions in their gums along the upper jaw.
Immediately after the surgery, patients can expect a bit of discomfort, swelling, and bleeding, but these side effects should not be serious. Usually, they can be controlled with over-the-counter pain medication and pressure on the wound.
Patients will be instructed to avoid blowing their nose and sneezing, as this could cause the bone graft to shift out of position and potentially loosen the stitches. After about seven to 10 days, patients will return to the office for a checkup just to make sure everything is healing well. Then, they’ll have to wait for the bone to finish healing before they can get their implants.
Placing Implants After a Sinus Lift
The jaw needs time to heal and integrate the graft after a sinus lift so it becomes one stable piece. Healing times vary, but for most patients, dental implants can be placed four to nine months after the initial sinus lift.
Dr. Scherer will thoroughly examine the jaw before placing the implants to make sure it’s ready, so patients have nothing to worry about.
Get a Sinus Lift From Dr. Scherer
If you want dental implants but you don’t have enough bone in your upper jaw to support them, a sinus lift might be the answer you’re seeking. It’s a great way to provide a stable and solid base for your implants so that they last for years to come. Of course, sinus lifts aren’t the right solution for everyone, which is why you should schedule a consultation with Dr. Scherer.
Find out if you are a sinus lift candidate by calling our office today at (630) 364-2888 to book your appointment or fill out the form below.