What Is a sinus lift?
A sinus lift, or sinus augmentation, is a surgery used to raise and/or add bone in the upper back jaw, where your molars and premolars are located. Your dentist will use this technique to provide greater structural support for dental implants, procedure during which the sinus floor is lifted and filled with bone graft material that eventually becomes integrated with your bone.
Why do patients need sinus lifts?
When a patient’s sinuses are too close to the jaw or that there is not enough bone height in the upper jaw, your dentist will have to perform a sinus lift procedure to make placing implants possible. Some of the common reasons are:
- The presence of gum (periodontal) disease;
- A damaged bone due to a previous procedure (like a difficult tooth extraction);
- Bone resorption following tooth loss, especially when the teeth have been missing for a long time;
- The position of the patient’s maxillary sinus, which can be too close to the upper jaw for the dentist to place implants;
What kind of bone grafts material are used during a sinus lift procedure?
- In some cases, the patient's own bone will be used.
- In other instances, prepared bone (frozen bone, freeze-dried bone, demineralized freeze-dried bone), either human or from another species (i.e. bovine), can be purchased from a tissue bank for use.
- Another alternative involves the use of synthetically derived graft material such as hydroxyapatite.