When is a Sinus Lift Necessary?

There’s multiple reasons why someone might need dental implants. Decay due to periodontal disease and tooth loss are the most common. When a patient comes in with these types of issues, we need to do a thorough examination which includes an assessment of the health and integrity of the jaw bone. Strong, healthy bone tissue is essential for successful implants.

The problem is that when teeth are lost, or decay has taken place, deterioration occurs in the bone material. The body receives signals that the bone is no longer needed for support or to pass nutrients, and as a result, bone tissue is resorbed. This means not only less bone, but what’s there is often of poor quality. When this is the case, a sinus lift may be necessary before proceeding with implants.

Patients of course have concerns about the sinus lift procedure, mainly the healing time and expense involved, and are often curious about whether a sinus lift is really needed. To answer those questions, let’s talk more about the specifics of when a sinus lift is necessary for the best possible outcome.

When an Implant is Needed in the Molar or Premolar Areas

Implants in the molar and premolar areas are the main reason for needing a sinus lift. The implant procedure can’t happen without a strong bone structure, which we rely on as the foundation for implants. Consider the effects of building a house on weak foundation. The jaw needs to be strong enough to support the implants before the procedure can take place.

To Prevent Future Loss

One lost or damaged tooth can weaken the surrounding bone. As the sinus drops and the bone softens, the surrounding teeth can be affected. What started out as one problem tooth can have a domino affect that leads to future tooth loss. If a lost or decayed tooth has resulted in the softening of bone tissue, a sinus lift may be necessary to preserve the health of the remaining teeth and protect future dental health.

Enlarged Sinuses

Sinuses can be enlarged for many reasons. The may enlarge naturally due to age, or because of chronic sinusitis. When sinuses are enlarged, they are in closer proximity to the areas where dental implants are placed. This poses a risk of the implants poking through the sinus cavity. To avoid this, a sinus lift is often suggested for patients with sinuses that are enlarged or positioned near implant areas.

Protecting Your Health by Minimizing Procedures

Our goal is to help you achieve a beautiful smile, while protecting and preserving your dental health. Sometimes this means considering procedures like a sinus lift. Trust that we understand your concerns and want the best possible outcome for you. If a sinus lift has been recommended it’s because our professional experience tells us that it will be the safest and most complete route to a lifetime of great dental health. We’re here to answer all your questions and concerns. If you’d like to talk more about sinus lifts or make an appointment, contact Specialty Dental Care P.C. today.