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What to Expect When Undergoing a Sinus Lift

If you’re looking to replace missing permanent teeth with dental implants, you may have to undergo a sinus lift first. Find out what to expect here.

You might be familiar with dental implants as a great dental option for missing permanent teeth, but you may not be as familiar with its occasional counterpart: sinus lifts. Sinus lifts are sometimes needed for dental implants to be put in properly.

Since dental implants have started growing in popularity in the last 15 years, the number of sinus lifts done has grown as well.

Our skilled team of dentists at Dental Specialists of New Jersey goes over everything you need to know about sinus lifts and what to expect during the procedure if you’re getting dental implants and consequently also need a sinus lift beforehand.

What is a sinus lift?

A sinus lift — sometimes referred to as sinus augmentation or sinus graft — is a common dental procedure that’s used in order to make the process of putting in dental implants much smoother.

When dental implants are put into place, sufficient bone quality and quantity is needed in your upper jaw, and if this doesn’t exist on its own, that’s when a sinus lift is performed. During a sinus lift, the amount of bone in your upper jaw is increased between your molars and premolars in order to give your dental implants sufficient bone to be anchored to.

Who qualifies for a sinus lift?

If you have less than 4-6mm of bone height in the back portion of your jaw, a sinus lift will most likely be recommended if you’re looking at dental implants. This low amount of jawbone can happen for multiple reasons, including:

  • Birth defects
  • Large sinus cavities
  • Periodontal disease
  • Cancer

If you have a fragile jawbone, that can also account for the low amount of bone there is in your jaw.

No matter the reason, sinus lifts are recommended in order to ensure your dental implants are secure and will be able to last you a lifetime.

What to expect during your sinus lift

Before the procedure, make sure and arrange to have a friend or family member drive you home since you’ll be given a sedative to help you feel relaxed during the whole process.

After the treatment area has been numbed and you feel calm and relaxed from the sedative, your dentist will make a series of incisions in order to lift the sinus floor and insert the necessary bone graft. Stitches are then placed to ensure everything heals properly.

When the procedure is over and you start the recovery process, make sure and follow all your provider’s instructions for post-surgery care. You’ll need to avoid things like strenuous exercise, drinking through a straw, and blowing your nose for a few weeks.

After everything from your sinus lift surgery has healed, your dentist will be able to proceed with helping you get your dental implants for any crowns or bridges.

If you’d like to learn more about the sinus lift process, call one of our office locations in Verona or Westfield, New Jersey or book an appointment online with us today.